Candy-coated: Puritan-based fear of the erotic is a sway-backed fear of death
Digital photography and manipulation
I'm Brianna Bliss Gardner, a healer, artist, and writer living and creating in Charlotte, NC, the United States.
These images are from a body of work I call Mirror Poetry/ Whole Again.
We live in a culture saturated in a patriarchal influence that stresses a separation and elevation of mental matters over the body. The Father- based monotheisms historically condemn the body as the dirty cage that prevents us from true spiritual union with God. We live in our heads on phrases like “mind over matter,” and “no pain, no gain.” We push harder, work faster, and maintain mobility for its own sake. Feminine body wisdom is all but forgotten in the midst of this mind/body dualism, yet sexuality, receptivity and physicality are integral parts of existing in this world and connecting to Spirit.
I feel that as a woman and a writer, one of the most radical acts I can perform is to project my poetry onto my body and own my creativity as a reflection of all of myself. In owning my body as art, I challenge centuries of history that glorifies the female nude produced by a male artist’s objectifying gaze. I reclaim the feminine form as part of a larger whole; a body with her own mind, ideas, and creative Spirit. In placing my body central to my creative process, I find an autonomous form of Union in my own right; a sacred integration of all my parts, as well as expressions both verbal and visual.
This is just a portion of this project. I intend to revisit mirror poetry throughout the ever-changing stages of my life and body, as a visual witness to the process.
My online portfolio is at briannabliss.com