Woman Photographs Herself Receiving Strange Looks in Public
“I now reverse the gaze and record their reactions to me while I perform mundane tasks in public spaces. I seek out spaces that are visually interesting and geographically diverse. I try to place myself in compositions that contain feminine icons or advertisements. Otherwise, I position myself and the camera in a pool of people…and wait.
The images capture the gazer in a microsecond moment where they, for unknowable reasons, have a look on their face that questions my presence. Whether they are questioning my position in front of the lens or questioning my body size, the gazer appears to be visually troubled that I am in front of them.”
Photographer: Haley Morris-Cafiero
Project: Wait Watchers
Thought this was actually really cool and I’d share it with you guys! Takes a lot to get up there and do something like this. Love it!
this is such a fucking important project to me because i am constantly stared at in public in a negative way and turned into some disgusting object for the amusement of others and this is a peaceful way to confront those people
turning the spectators into the spectacle
why are people so shitty
These are some of the most fantastically interesting pictures that I’ve seen in a long time and the idea of capturing the gaze as it happens is beautiful. But what I’d like to talk about for a moment is that in these examples, those who look (clearly in judgement and disgust because people are so often shitty) are women. Women have been taught to police the bodies of other women even as they police their own by measuring and evaluating based on their internalization of the male-gaze (if we’re to be heteronormative about this and since we’re already being shitty why the hell not) and when they find others to be clearly wanting they find it alternately disgusting and hilarious.
Am I saying that men aren’t capable of similar crap? Of course not and I’m sure this project has a fair share of men being caught executing a privileged gaze, but in bang for your buck, our culture has done a superb job getting women to hate other women and hate themselves.
One of the unfortunate consequences of institutionalized misogyny is that women have been taught from a young age to openly engage in sexist behaviors towards other women on a regular basis without any real understanding or awareness that they are essentially participating in the same culture that would seek to oppress them.
That’s the harsh truth.