Hsin Wang: Rethinking the relationship with the self
The work of Taiwanese fine art photographer Hsin Wang, currently based in Brooklyn, is arresting through the intimate, honest and provocative approach, turning her personal stories into powerful metaphors and symbolic images of the complex relationship not only with the other, but with one’s own self.
In her struggle to understand the life experiences she encountered, she learned that happiness is impossible when you fail to love yourself, while doubt and self-criticism grow the wounds instead of healing them. Depression and agony, the sense of loss and lack of control can result in a process that the artist defines as de-selfing – a transformation of the self in order to please others, yet generating great suffering and a kind of asphyxiation of the true identity of those in pain.
Finally, these inner conflicts and concerns may translate into physical and emotional damage, an eating disorder, for instance, as highlighted in the project “I Hurt Myself Because You Hurt Me”: “When people are unable to control their surroundings, an eating disorder can feel like an escape, protest, and duplicate of that boundary invasion and to claim they have the control of themselves.” The deceiving illusion of love and the obsession with perfection are explored in the photographic collage series “Hard to love”: “Each image tells some irrational thoughts, feelings, and behaviors which we have when we are frustrated about love.”
It is interesting how the face of the wounded never shows, always hidden, a silent and unsettling presence indicating a desperate desire and the absence of fulfillment, leaving behind the bitterness of uncertainty, solitude and emptiness.
I Hurt Myself Because You Hurt Me
Hard To Love
Images © Hsin Wang