An Exploration of Self: Brooke Shaden’s Altered Realities

JoAnne Artman Gallery
May 25, 2019 2:18PM

Brooke Shaden’s self-portrait photographs are filled with psychological intensity that addresses human identity and sense of belonging. In her current show at JoAnne Artman Gallery’s New York location, Shaden reflects unusual, emotional, and transformed images that reflect the inherent beauty and darkness of human nature.

Installation View, “Begin Again”

“Begin Again started as an exploration of the self. What would the world look like if only I existed? Would I create more life in my own vision? From those questions the series morphed into an exploration of the hidden self. How do we identify our true selves among a pack? How do we stand out when we aren’t sure who we are yet? And most importantly, where do the differences between us truly lie?” Shaden explains. “Through this series you will explore four major topics: the hidden self, the reflected self, the identified self, and the contained/released self.”

Installation View, “Begin Again”

Devising and reflecting a transformed image, Shaden’s visual fluidity and tonal palette are reminiscent of a painted image. Evoking a vintage, gritty feel, her work is both tonally and thematically representational of the sublime elements of nature and humanity. Based in reality and filtered through personal experience, each image within the series is rooted in deep personal investigation as digital alterations to everyday objects and scenes morph into alluring and disconcerting narratives.

Installation View, “Begin Again”

Culminating in a celebration of the endurance of the human spirit, “Begin Again” is an acknowledgement of internal struggles that connect us and the liberation of self-acceptance. Maintaining an inclusive, humanist spirit, Brooke Shaden bravely navigates the nuances of the human psyche and of individual exploration.

“As Walt Whitman said, “Do I contradict myself? Very well then, I contradict myself. I am large; I contain multitudes.” If we are to embody ourselves in those diverse and unique forms, we must be willing to take away all concealments – the veils, the masks, the reflections, and become who we are meant to be,” Shaden concludes.

Brooke Shaden
JoAnne Artman Gallery

JoAnne Artman Gallery, Presents:


June 13th, 2019 – August 31st, 2019

Artist’s Reception: Thursday, June 13th, 2019 from 6pm-8pm

Please RSVP: 949.510.5481 by June 1st, 2019

JoAnne Artman Gallery

511A West 22nd St. | New York, NY 10011

Contact: JoAnne Artman

Telephone: 949-510-5481 | E-mail: [email protected]


JoAnne Artman Gallery