Limerick, Ireland

Amy O’Riordan

b. 1977, Ireland

In this photograph, a young woman engages in an intimate activity by filming her body. She uses the mechanical eye of the camera to take control of her own image, reflecting the gaze back on herself. The audience is invited to gaze at Diane in her bedroom, and is given access to her personal space and this particular private action. Questions are raised: Is she alone in her own narcissistic pleasure or is there someone watching her at the other side of the room?

Diane with Cinecamera

City Hall As a female artist, I take set-up digital photographs of my friends and myself that are carefully staged in terms of location, clothing and accessories. I direct scenarios that specifically explore young Limerick women and their identities. The situations are diaristic, and range from the everyday to the sensational existences of these young women. From posing together in narcissistic boredom or playing with shoes, these narratives essentially explore female relationships and the way women behave with each other. They depict notions of femininity as they masquerade in an endless ritual of dressing-up and role-play. They are aware of their possible objectification by their viewers, but also actively participate and take control of the gaze, displaying a sense of empowerment. Abstracting influences from the historical tradition of painting, my work embraces the aesthetical qualities from the Baroque period. The symbol of the dress is also an important and reoccurring motif, linking the present to the past.

(Text: on the border of each other catalogue, 2003)

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