holding time

mother portraits, 2018

Photographic C Types in Editions of 20” x 16”/ 30” x 36”/ 40” x 48”


The Mother Portraits are the foundation of the Holding Time Project. Over the course of three years, mothers were invited to breastfeed infront of the camera. The camera was used to capture sequences of images, as opposed to ‘shooting’ images. The role of the photographer was passive, meditative, minimal.

The range of mothers is deliberately broad in scope. Mothers range in age from early twenties to mid forties, with children aged from a few weeks to up to three and a half. There are tandem feeding mothers (mothers feeding two children simultaneously), single mothers and mothers of sick children. All are shot in the same way: against a neutral dark background in lighting reminiscent of Renaissance paintings. The work incorporates installation, moving image and animation. It can be shown as a six screen installation, or a set of still images, accompanied by a single screen version of the animation.

Mothers are seperately interviewed about their breastfeeding experiences and these are broadcast on a dedicated YouTube channel.

The development of the work is promoted via social media and a project website at www.holdingtime.org