The series Hidden Mothers references the early usages of photography when exposure times were long. Mothers who wanted a record of their children would often hide themselves under a piece of fabric and hold their children for the duration of the exposure to ensure a sharp image. I create formally similar images in contemporary times, as a metaphor for the unrecognized work that mothers do to support, provide for and nurture their children. Each mother is wrapped in a floral bed linen that elicits traditional notions of femininity and domestic spaces. There is a tension between hiding and revealing: the mothers’ identities are obscured, yet the vibrant sheets accentuate their presence, while in other instances aspects of their identities are exposed. This interplay explores the complexities of motherhood and functions as a kind of erasure of self. Mothers are navigating a world where their roles as a nurturer can feel sidelined and invisible. In the era of helicopter parents and tiger moms mothering is not only personal but political.
Archival Pigment Prints, 20”x30”, 2017
Megan Jacobs is an artist based in New Mexico. Her creative work explores delicate relationships—our existence as material and concept, the interweaving between two partners in love and the bond of parent and child. Her work has been featured in Musee Magazine, Lenscratch, Feature Shoot, and Frankie Magazine. Her work has been exhibited nationally and internationally and has been part of exhibitions at Blue Sky Gallery, The FENCE (regional), Saatchi Gallery (online), the Museum of New Art (MONA), Pingyao Photographic Festival, and the International Symposium on Electronic Art (ISEA).
Jacobs earned an MFA in photography from the University of New Mexico and a BA from Smith College. She is an Associate Professor in the Honors College at the University of New Mexico and an Adobe Educational Leader.