Blackburne House – Stephanie De Leng’s Body Landscapes

stephanie-100Stephanie De Leng’s Body Landscapes
5 July – 31 August 2010
The aim of Body Landscapes is to challenge the flawless, airbrushed images of perfection that are so overtly touted by the fashion industry and the media and bring to the forefront the reality of the potential harm they cause and in doing so confront the insecurities in us all.

Stephanie de Leng, a former international model turned photographer and writer; has created the work as a reaction to her modelling commissions were mostly body-related – swimwear, lingerie and once even a nude TV ad which won a fine art award; it is this experience she draws on to create Body Landscapes.

The aim of Body Landscapes is to challenge the flawless, airbrushed images of perfection that are so overtly touted by the fashion industry and the media and bring to the forefront the reality of the potential harm they cause and in so doing confront the insecurities in us all. Stephanie did not tamper with any of the images and used a high definition macro lens to capture her subjects’ dislikes in their truest form.  In the interest of fairness, she has also included a body part of herself in the exhibition, which like all the other images, is anonymous.

Attendance for the Private View is strictly RSVP based and if anyone would like to attend please contact Blackburne House (paulinejenkins@blackburnehouse.co.uk), Clare Bates (clare@agentmarketing.co.uk) or Stephanie through her website.

Roger Phillips will be chairing the debate linked to the exhibition ‘Body Image and the Media and How it Affects Young Adults’ which will be held on Thursday 15th July 2010, 6.30pm until 8.30pm at Blackburne House. This is open to the general public, will be filmed and streamed live onto the internet at http://www.livestream.com/liverpoolstories. Young adults are especially encouraged to attend.

Stephanie de Leng, Photographer and creator of Body Landscapes said:

“With Body Landscapes, I felt that just as looking at images of perfection is depressing, I decided that looking at humanity as it really is warts, scars, cellulite and all – could be paradoxically uplifting. I have asked random people to confront their deepest insecurities by revealing to the camera the parts of themselves they struggle to like. Instead of trying to cover up and beautify, I have approached this project from the viewpoint of a landscape photographer, striving to reveal as much detail and definition as possible within a pleasing composition.”

Throughout the exhibition there will be an opportunity to post your feelings and reactions to the images on a notice board.  Stephanie will be inviting volunteers to participate in the next stage of this exciting project scheduled for the 2010 Independents Liverpool Biennial entitled “Body Parts We Love”.

Stephanie continued:

“With their abnormally long legs, tiny waists and symmetrical faces sitting upon giraffe like necks, not many of us can ever hope to look like them. Yet these enhanced images are splashed across every media outlet, proclaiming an impossible ideal to strive for. In many people this can cause a deep-seated unease, or even depression. It is from this realization that my project has been conceived.”

Jo McGrath, Enterprise Director at Blackburne House said:

“Blackburne House has a long history of supporting women and the very first Liverpool Central WI is based here. Body image is something we are all conscious of, so naturally, we were really keen to work with Stephanie and support Body Landscapes, although her exhibition does not solely address female imagery, we feel that the it is important that this exhibition comes to Blackburne House as the ideologies behind it sit hand in hand with our ethos of equality.”

Stephanie concluded:
“Blackburne House is an ideal venue for my Body Landscapes exhibition, the whole history of the building, the work they do for local women is something I really admire. I wanted to challenge the conventional with this work, which is something that Blackburne House continually strive to do for the women they work with.”

Venue Details

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