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This work explores the virus through the photographic portrait. As we hear about epidemics and pandemics which globalisation has enabled to spread with ease, our ‘diseases of modernity’ such as SARS, avian and swine flu threaten to disrupt our modern world. A common personal response, in the main inadequate, becomes a simple mask, an attempt to separate ourselves from those around us, whilst not being able to do that physically.
The photographic portrait traditionally attempts to provide the viewer with an insight into the person who is being photographed. In this work the subject is wearing a surgical mask, not in the expected hospital or medical environment, but in the apparent safety of the domestic, making a connection between subject and viewer more difficult.