On Seeing & Being Seen
Unveiled - A New Book By Lone Mørch
We all live veiled lives. Some veils conceal, hide and protect. Other veils seduce, soften, draw in, and let us retain a bit of our mystery. Certain veils we spend lifetimes lifting. Others are so flimsy, we barely notice them. In Unveiled, women undress in front of the camera to discover their freedom to see and be seen.
Music by Jo Hamilton - Deeper from the album Gown
"WHEN THE SOUL WANTS AN EXPERIENCE, SHE THROWS AN IMAGE OUT FRONT AND STEPS INTO IT." ~ MEISTER ECKHART
Unveiled (working title) chronicles my intimate photographic encounters with hundreds of women over more than a decade, and how this work has touched and changed us. Inspired by my own liberating experience in front of the camera, I opened Lolo's Boudoir in Sausalito in 2004, a studio dedicated to women's self-discovery, and since, hundreds of women of all ages, stages and walks of life have come to be photographed by me, nude.
In fine art photos and prose, Unveiled reveals the unexpected interplay between photography and therapy, between seer and seen, and what it takes, on one hand, to expose oneself to the camera, and on the other, capture those unguarded moments when a women let go of her shames, insecurities and critical filters, and shows up, as herself, at ease in her body and being.
The book consists of a collection of 120 black-and-white photos of women of all ages in various stages of unveiling – from feeling shy and awkward to fantasizing and finding freedom. Alongside, reflections and behind-the-scene stories offer context and contrast to the images, making you laugh and cry as the women uncover and recover the lost, discarded and disowned parts of themselves.
This project asks questions like: Who is the woman behind the veils? What stirs beneath the skin? What would female sexuality and freedom look like if untainted by cultural projection? Where are we still hiding? While the book doesn’t give finite answers, it touches upon the veins and vanities than run beneath the skin and allows women to contemplated their own nudity, by veiling and unveiling as they want to. It moves our focus from body image obsession to having a real relationship with the body. In this book, the woman have come alive, not only to the camera’s curious eye, but also to their own, asking, who am I now?
While most photography of women has been dominated by the male gaze, this book is about women looking at themselves. Ultimately, Unveiled is a book about awakening – to our skin, our hearts, our aliveness. In a world where the body is still sold, shamed, being legislated over and used for commerce, a world that likes to provoke and hang it all out, Unveiled lets a woman restore her relationships to her body, and retain a bit of her feminine mystery. An evocative, lush and thrilling book, it offers an important artistic and literary contribution to a cultural dialog of and about women and the ownership of their lives – and bodies. Unveiled is everywoman's story, bound to get under your skin.