background background
facebooktwitterYouTubeInstagramflickr
Begin Again
artist statement
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?

Through this series you will explore four major topics: the hidden self, the reflected self, the identified self, and the contained/released self.

The Hidden Self: a meditation on praise, devotion, and the places we put our identity when we don't look inward. Do the institutions and people who easily give us identities hold us back from finding uniqueness within ourselves?

The Reflected Self: the world shows us who we are before we are able to discern that for ourselves. These provide a look at the mirrors that cast an identity onto us and the shattering of those perceptions as we don't match who we think we should be.

The Identified Self: moving past reflections to try on the masks we find. We explore many identities, often assuming the surface role of who we want to be without digging deep enough to pull up the reality of our most authentic being.

The Concealed/Revealed Self: the boxes we fit into and how to break out of them. These final images are a look at the ways we try to fit ourselves into pigeonholes of identity. We suffer there, stagnating and pretending, or we break free.

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 concealment – the veils, the masks, the reflections – and become who we are meant to be.

© 2008-2019 Brooke Shaden - All Rights Reserved