2018 #61

Face

by Maria Kokunova

"The series Face is a reflection on the mechanisms that constitute someone being themselves."

FACE

All of my works are about self-reflection. I find it intriguing that searching for an answer to the question ‘what am I’ is inherent to the human condition. Despite this question being studied endlessly, it rejects a single answer and continues to challenge human minds.

I started the series Face whilst studying at FotoDepartament on a course titled ‘Overcoming Photography’, guided by the Russian curator Nadezhda Sheremetova. It was a versatile, practical program where we studied a wide range of methods whilst immersed in the theory of modern photography and related disciplines. It encouraged me to be more daring in my experiments and to be more accurate when formulating my ideas. The series Face is a reflection on the mechanisms that constitute someone being themselves. It acts as a visual form of this exploration which relies heavily on theory from the French philosopher and scholar, Jacques Lacan.

SEQUENCING & SELF-REFLECTION

Sequencing photographs is an important approach to create a feeling of deep reflection over a period of time, of experiencing one’s self. In Face there is a sequence of a girl doing a backflip; returning to the same point through gaining experience. This is a perfect metaphor for self-reflection. In the collage, I included a picture of an embryo at week twenty-two – when it is said that the development of neural connections begin and that personality starts to take shape. These structures make the basis of physiological characteristics that can be seen during an individual’s entire life. Sequences are also a visual form of matrix made up of rows and columns. I use this as a symbol for human life in general – for how someone perceives their own life – so sequences work as a metaphor on this second level as well.

AN ORGANIC APPROACH

I think the way I work has organically developed; despite working on specific theses and trying to achieve precise results each time, I’ve always tried to work in an unrestricted way when it comes to my method. In my overall process, it is more important for me to conceptualise and visualise the thought rather than adhere to any formal framework. This is also true for working with layout, taking into account both the semantic and visual considerations…but I think the most important thing is that the idea always takes precedence, and this way of thinking of course affects how I approach my work.

Read more (1 min read)

Photo of Face by Maria Kokunova

Photo of Face by Maria Kokunova

Photo of Face by Maria Kokunova

Photo of Face by Maria Kokunova

Photo of Face by Maria Kokunova

Photo of Face by Maria Kokunova

Maria Kokunova

St. Petersburg, RU

Maria Kokunova

Maria Kokunova

St. Petersburg, RU

Unrestricted to a singular approach, Maria Kokunova (b. 1983, Russia) uses an array of visual metaphors to create a deeply personal practice of self-reflection. Touching on themes of motherhood, birth and the self, her practice is inspired not by the external or the physical but instead by narratives within herself. Kokunova’s work translates emotional and psychological states into visual form, forming an internal discourse where her process and photographs act as a meditative stream of thought.

View Artist Profile

Keep exploring

Continue Surprise me

You have reached the end.

Start at the beginning.

Unseen Platform uses cookies to give you the best experience. By continuing to browse you agree to our privacy policy that can be accessed here.

Okay, thank you