PhotoSummer: Artist's Statement

Sandra Chen Weinstein

A Crazed Girl. From SHE/THEY project

Her soul in division from itself
Climbing, falling She knew not where,
Her knee-cap broken, that girl I declare
A beautiful lofty thing, or a thing
Heroically lost, heroically found.

No common intelligible sound
But sang, 'O sea-starved, hungry sea.'

– William Yates

I first met Davey on the street fair, they were nude. I was intrigued by their demeanor and vulnerability. I have come to learn about her life been neglected by her mother, raped at young age - Davey developed multi-personalities as a result of childhood traumas.

Davey has worked as a writing assistant, but mostly a rope performer of the BDSM subculture. They find connection through rope. Their emotional world is complex and constantly finds balance in daily life as the find love and poly-amorous relationships with multiple partners. For Davey, it is about that freedom, and the ability to explore more amoebic forms of connection and expression of love than what normative society. They consider the whole lifestyle to be radically transformation by virtue of its nature. Davey and their partners embraces sex positively and celebrates the full gender spectrum.

This project is from our collaboration. I wanted to allow them to explore their own ways of expressing themself in their private space. I shot with available light, capturing the significant tattoo that adorns their body – their favorite poem from William Yates, 'A Crazed Girl' (see above) . They say that it provides inspiration for them in their struggles and hopes for a higher spiritual life. Since I took their first picture, I have been witnessing their continuing battles to bring balance their trauma, life, love and relationships.

I have always been interested in portraying intimate human relationships and the psychologically complex emotional world, especially for people who are seen as the 'under dog'. Because with all these challenges in life, their suffering and struggling to live on, strive to overcome all obstacles, turn their despair to hope.