EVOLUTION GRANT recipient 2023
Some say my dad’s death was the spark that ignited my depression, but this feeling has been brewing for a while. I started to notice a sadness creep in a few years into my 40s. I searched “depression in women” and stumbled across articles stating women are the most depressed at age 44. I was, at that very moment, 44.
Loss during this time in a woman’s life can weigh heavily. Children are getting older and need the comfort of a parent less; the health of one’s own parent(s) is starting to fail, and hormonal shifts begin.
By using the color blue, which for hundreds of years has been associated with melancholy and sadness, these images evoke this period in my life and how it affects those around me. A mid-point, as I am stripping down, taking stock, and finding a new place amongst the loss.
Heather Evans Smith is a photo-based artist whose work reflects her southern roots, motherhood, womanhood and a whimsical imagination she relied on as an only child in a rural town. Her photographic imagery explores the ideas of memory, loss and family in conceptual settings. Smith’s work has been exhibited in both solo and group exhibitions at venues including the Fox Talbot Museum in Lacock, England, the Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University, NC and Leica Galerie Milano in Milan, Italy. She is a Critical Mass 2014, 2018 and 2021 Top 50 recipient as well as a 2022 Silver List artist. Smith is also a CENTER 2022 Me&Eve grant recipient. Her first monograph, Seen Not Heard, was published by Flash Powder Projects in 2016 followed by two self-published monographs, Alterations and Blue. She resides with her family in Chapel Hill, North Carolina.