Photographic Reflections for Survivors of Body Trauma.
"Seriously, how can we live in our bodies and not ever look at them, really get to know them? I wanted to see myself. I wrote a grant to fund the project and after receiving one from UNLV’s Graduate and Professional Student Association I documented my naked body every day for nine months." - Shelbi Schroeder: Interview with Rosa JH Berland
The Body Project provides trauma participants with space to rediscover their bodies with intention. For six months participants are asked to document their naked body with a FujiFilm Instax Camera.
Through daily photographic reflections, the goal is to give participants a way to reclaim what was taken from them unwillingly. The Body Project confronts this loss by addressing the conflicting views survivors tend to experience. We “other” our bodies because we don’t feel ownership over them, yet our ego clings tightly to the body, allowing it to dictate our self worth.
I provide guidance and support during and after the project. After the process I bring all willing participants together. As a group we curate an art exhibit displaying these powerful images.
" I began to see my body as shapes. I did't feel like it looked 'fat', it just existed and it was beautiful as it was." - Anonymous
" I hated and loved this project. It was challenging, there were days I felt so gross but I kept doing it because there were days when I felt strong." - Anonymous
" I didn't know what to expect, which was the best part because what I got out of it was a new love for myself." - Anonymous
*The Project is currently in fundraising mode, please donate on the donation page listed under The Body Project.
Body and Space
There is a risk in standing out, There is a risk in blending in.
"Some of the other work that captivates is photographic. There is a touch of a fool-the-viewer conceit to Shelbi Schroeder’s Vent, a color digital print, but it is done so well that it’s hard to resent the visual trick she accomplishes. The title is a clue and doesn’t seem to have much to do with the emotional implications of that term. She isn’t venting, but pointing our eyes toward the vent in the pictured room, where we find her hidden in plain sight. It’s as if the body is merging with the architecture, a conceit that contains echoes of her extensive Body as Textile and Wallpaper series. "
-Robert L. Pincus : Art critic for the Los Angeles Times & The San Diego Union-Tribune (March 2018 ESXLA: Transpose show- referencing image above)
Art allows me to portray a utopia where bodies are free.
A flag is something you plant in the ground when you win a war.
I’m taking my hyper awareness of the body and tangling it with ideas of expected beauty, domestic abuse, sexual abuse, body shaming and other experiences many bodies are confronted with. Mixing formalism and feminism I camouflage the body.