An exhibition of photographs at Black and Gold Gallery in Thirroul this week (above Finbox) is taking a look at what it really means to be beautiful.
It’s the work of local artist Nina Kourea, who is showing a series of raw self-portraits that explore the concept of beauty in the framework of our society.
“I was asked to be part of ‘Fractured Beauty’ at the Wollongong Art Gallery and decided to turn the camera on myself,” she says. “It was really confronting to think about what beauty is, and to ask myself if I was beautiful. I’m not what most people would call ‘beautiful’ within our social constructs, but does that mean I’m not beautiful to everyone?”
“After I showed the exhibition for the first time, I left the country, so I didn’t have to hear any feedback, but this time I’m sticking around,” she laughs.” It’s certainly confronting to see myself up there and naked, but the exhibition has had a great response. It also blurs the lines between gender and self-exploration, which has people taking notice.
“I have called the exhibition ‘Mother’, because growing up as a Greek girl, there was pressure to dress elegantly and find the right husband, which just wan’t me.
“Since I showed her these photos, my mother has started treating me differently, and acknowledged I am an artist. It has led to a significant improvement in our relationship.
“The fact we are exhibiting and it’s Mother’s Day this weekend is just serendipity!”
‘Mother’ is open at Black and Gold until May 7.
Photos thanks to Nina Kourea and The Advocate