Self Portrait
The self portrait was made in 2017 as a statement of who I am.

It was an extremely difficult turning point in my life, which determined my future.
I came out of a toxic, abusive relationship and declared my strength and independence. Despite depression and deep emotional trauma, I found the strength to become a different person. I needed to use all my willpower to get together in pieces and declare myself. Through art and activism, I regained my right to be visible, the right to speak, the right to be myself. I started shooting a new project — a series of therapeutic photo shoots for women survivors of domestic violence. By helping other women, I was helping myself. I also actively promoted the ideas of feminism and body positivity in my social networks and photo projects. In Belarus during this period, it was quite difficult to openly declare yourself as a feminist, talk about sexuality and promote the ideas of visibility of women. I faced sexism and hatred, strangers threatened me and tried in every way to humiliate me. At the same time I felt support from other women, LGBTQIA community, and open-minded people around me. It was an important moment of my formation as an artist, a woman, a person.

This portrait reflects all sides of that acute moment of time - strength and vulnerability, sexuality, aggressiveness, self-confidence, freedom to be yourself. It became a declaration of my new identity.

Picture was made in collaboration with Kate Shumak

45x30 cm
Archival print
2017, Minsk
Made on