A Teenage Room explores the girl as a site of resistance and dialogue within dominant narratives around womanhood, feminism, femininity, adolescence and puberty. Playing with dolls, facing puberty, growing pubic hair, menstruation and the loss of virginity, changes our bodies and sexual relations.
A Teenage Room invites the viewers to explore, imagine and travel back in time, recalling adolescence and the transitioning into adulthood. Inspired by Kitsch, surrealism, pop art and feminist self-portraits, I worked with a colour palette inspired by cinema, playing with nostalgia and moving between beauty, abjection and humour. Returning to my own childhood home and bedroom and those of my friends, I mined these shrines we left behind. Often unchanged as we moved out and on in life, it is the strange combination of toys and relics that reveal teenage fantasies - collages of pop star posters sit alongside stuffed animals. Utilising the universal experience, my work both plays with and upon the complicated stereotypes surrounding girlhood and girlishness.
A Teenage Room consists in part of over 250 life-size cut outs of flower arrangements. In each of the 40 individual arrangements you can find real flowers, fake flowers and different objects relating to childhood and adolescence and the commercialisation and packaging of sex as a toy. Penis lollypops, Barbie dolls, make up and other objects melt into a syrupy pastel glittering mess inspired by kitsch and fantasy. After photographing the flower arrangements separately and printing them out as life-sized images, I cut each arrangement out by using a scalpel, as I wanted to create a scrapbook/sticker-feeling of obsessive collecting - creating the feeling of a bedroom wall, diary or schoolbag covered in layers of references as we start to express ourselves within our spaces more visually. I also wanted to include myself in this project, as it is very personal. Inspired by a film still from The Umbrellas of Cherbourg, 1964, I produced a self-portrait, showing my back and my ponytail.
The following images are installation shots from BA Photography degree show at London College of Communication, University of the Arts London, 2015.