‘How are you really?’
I’ve wrestled with this question quite a bit. As someone who’s had anxiety for as long as they can remember, the past few years have tested my mental health more than any other point in my life.
In the early days of the pandemic I found it physically impossible to get out of bed. Logging into my day job from bed, breaking down in tears every few hours because the world was too terrifying and painful to bear. For the first time ever it seemed many of my irrational fears were becoming a reality.
Through it all I pushed to make art when creativity hit. Trying to capture these anxieties and repurposing them into something digestible — Take away their powers somehow.
What I’ve learned over and over is that like creating, working through these feelings is a process. The anxiety, pain, and grief are still there, but I’ve gotten a little better at acknowledging and living with them.
Much of the work I’ve made touches on my own personal battle with anxiety, depression, and anger and how I still struggle talking about these feelings candidly. This particular body of work is an attempt to understand my own feelings. This work is me allowing myself to step into a vulnerable space, and yet still define my own boundaries around my own psyche.
*These particular images were taken when I relocated from New York City to my parents home in Ohio for the Spring – Summer of 2020.
ABOUT THE ARTIST
Maryanne Braine is an artist and photographer from Columbus, Ohio. She received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Studio Art from Earlham College in Richmond, Indiana in 2014 and her MFA in Photography at Parsons School of Design, The New School in New York City in 2018. She resides in New York City.
Braine’s work is concerned with the materiality of the photographic image, memory in relation to the snapshot, mental health, the self, and the body. Braine specializes in alternative and analog photography processes such as cyanotypes, mordancage, emulsion lifts, and gel transfers.
She was awarded the President’s Purchase Award from Earlham College in 2014. Her work has been featured in collective exhibitions in Ohio, Indiana, Oregon, New York City, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Russia, China, India, and New Zealand. Her recent thesis work has appeared in online publication Paper Journal in September 2018. She was an artist-in-residence at The Spruce Residency in Indiana, PA in 2019.
For questions or inquiries, she can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
© Maryanne Braine