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Down Town Abbey
Melanie Willhide: Hallucinatory Portraits That Rethink the Ways We Look at Women
Through formal portraiture mixed with plastic flowers, images from Playgirl magazine, reference to nightshade potions, and other source material, Melanie Willhide’s series “Henbane for Honey Bun” takes a hallucinatory look at the ways in which we look at women.
The series took root, so to speak, a couple of years ago when Willhide began photographing flowers. At the same time, she was also making portraits of women in her life she felt were fascinating beyond their physical beauty.
Willhide, who is in her late 30s and a native East Coaster, was also beginning to feel as if she were being forced outside the realm of visibility in Los Angeles.
“The way people address me has shifted—people call me ma’am now—and there is a level of anonymity, even invisibility, since I also don’t work in the industry,” she said.
She visited the arts and crafts store Moskatels in Los Angeles, a place where “everything natural is made out of plastic” and began photographing artificial flowers, mixing them into the portraits of women.
“I started to create compositions that are part fake flower, part female subject. One never ages and never dies, and the other is subject to the culture of youth and perfection.”
0601; joffre lakes IV
For years my dad would travel the world on tour and he would take fantastic photos. I always loved looking at all the photos that he took when he got back home. Just sitting with him and looking at all the stuff he has seen and experienced. Today I have been looking through all the photos again and I came across this photo. This photo was taken at Kew Gardens in London by my dad and I think is one of my favorite photos he has taken.
dogs dealing with cats sleeping in their beds