Jenny Nash uses the experiential nature of her practice as an important component in her work. She documents spaces of memory and also appropriate PTSD treatments such as returning to sites of past trauma with my camera. Alternatively she confronts past trauma in self portraiture sessions which enable her to access deep memories and converse with elements of her history thought to have been abandoned to her unconscious. This is all practiced within the perimeters of her own methodologies Solo-Phototherapy and Auto-Pathography, her own version of the lens-based work developed by Rosy Martin, Jo Spence and Dr. Spencer Rowell.
The Wall (2016)
Dedicated to @sue_ca_photo who invested a lot of time in me and this project.
“It’s like I’m recycling the same old story.”
“Was it really all your fault? I don’t think so,” she said.
“It was my fault, everyone said so.”
“They hurt you…. You didn’t ask for that.”
“They were always blaming me.”
“They punished you for being you.”
“This all hurts. It’s supposed to be just taking pictures…. But this hurts too much.”
“You mustn’t stop fighting! You have a voice to tell the story, to be heard,” he said.
“I feel like I’m dying inside. I’m tired. Photography can’t erase any of it. It’s like a tug of war in my brain everyday.”
“Coming back to the images, the experiential nature of the practice begins a dialogue within. I know it was ingrained in you that you wouldn’t amount to anything but that is just not true! You need to…. You need to un-learn what they taught you in that place and we re-teach you in this place.”
“Fuck off, you don’t know what it’s like to be like this!”
“Don’t I? Tell me again I don’t, go on…. Push me away.”
“I see the writing on this wall! I know how this goes! You’ll fuck off like everyone else!”
“No I won’t.”
“I don’t believe you.”
The silence was deafening as he lent back on his chair in frustration. I wanted him to leave, stop talking to me because then I wouldn’t have to be disappointed down the line. It was like being back at high school when the first him promised he’d never leave me to the wolves. That’s my lot in life you see. I’m the sad little girl they want to help until it’s not convenient. I play out my role in people’s lives until they don’t need or want me in it anymore.
“No I won’t because that image…. that is you! That is you Jenny…. Standing out from all the other bricks. You’re not just another brick in the wall….”