All That I Left Behind

Amelia Shepherd

In this new series I use the mother-gaze to create staged, cinematic tableaus performed for the camera.

Awkward, isolated & displaced these humorous scenes express feelings of being lost & uncertain as a mother & additionally as one who has settled in a foreign country.

Within each frame I am fleeing the domestic. Venturing into the outside world. I bring to life unwitnessed mother archetypes. As mothers we are constantly in flux. Needed at home, yet at times yearning to escape. Frequently exhaustion & overwhelm outweigh the rewards. Boredom replaces awesome. We experience isolation with the burden of attachment.

I see this as essential work, giving a voice to others who experience similar feelings.

This series strives to create iconic powerful images which transcend the frame, connecting our global mother experiences.

Ultimately making this work helps me embody my mother-identity.

Artist biography

My work is rooted in documentary practice & particularly in telling our stories.

In 2012 I introduced self portraiture into my practice whilst creating 'Female Fighters'. This work explored identity and our relationship & vision of the world through documenting women post sparring in a series of portraits, texts & multi-media pieces. Including myself in this work was pivotal to my practice.

From my first pregnancy (2013) onwards self portraiture has enabled me to explore my transition into motherhood. In forcing my gaze home I've produced multiple bodies of work which give visibility to the domestic, often overlooked mother narrative.