Many of us have been through the angst of heartbreak. Though we listen to break up songs, let our friend’s cry on our shoulders and watch romantic chick flicks, nothing really prepares us for the fall out of a breakup until we are actually experiencing it. And usually, at least in my case, before the healing process is over (and it is a process), there are endless pints of ice cream consumed, lots of one on one talks with the girlfriends, copious amounts of tears, bottles of wine and boxes of Kleenex. Also a part of getting over a faltering romance is actually processing – who you were, who you are and who you want to be. When I had my break up, I turned to writing. Jennifer McClure turned to photography.
In her series, You Who Never Arrived, Jennifer explores her past relationships in an effort to explore where it all went wrong. By stepping in front of the camera and staging scenes from past lovers, Jennifer sought to examine any patterns that emerged. She restaged her memories in hotel rooms and used “stand-in” men to portray the parts of previous partners.
Jennifer describes how the project began: “I set out to recreate [a] specific story [specifically ‘Gazebo’ by Raymond Carver], but something changed as we began shooting. We shifted from acting as those characters to discussing our own relationships, histories, and insecurities. I was beginning something tenuous and new at the time, and I realized that I was bringing a lot of baggage to the table. I thought that dissecting all of my mistakes and patterns might keep me from repeating them.”
She describes her past relationships as “unlived in and impersonal,”which was why she chose to stage each scene in a hotel room. Each location was chosen to match the mood of the scene and friends or acquaintances agreed to be the stand ins.
This evocative series gives a deeply personal glimpse into the life and loves of Jennifer McClure, and even more so has a universal quality to them that all who view can feel and experience, for possibly having lived a similar scene at one point in our lives.
It was an excruciating process that ultimately brought a lot of closure.
You can see more of Jennifer’s work on her website.
CREDITS: Photographs by Jennifer McClure are copyrighted and have been used with permission for SLR Lounge. Do not copy, modify or re-post this article or images without express permission from SLR Lounge and the artist.
[via Feature Shoot]