Entangled encapsulates a pivotal moment for Maude Arsenault’s work, representing a shift in perspective and personal responsibility. “After years dedicated to creating glorified images of women,” she says of her success in fashion photography, “I came to question my role and influence in the transmission of models of femininity.” Albeit informed by a progressive, non-binary upbringing, this introspection is ultimately necessary now – in the context of motherhood as she raises three children including a young woman.
When speaking about Entangled, Arsenault invokes the French word carcan – meaning “ploy,” or “ambush,” or “ideological trap” – to explain the underlying motivation for making the spare and evocative pictures in this debut monograph. By which she means that
becoming an adult and a parent have given her distance and perspective on the cultural demands made on the bodies and societal roles of young women, and particularly on life choices which have been constricted or even foreordained. Arsenault calls the work “a poem, an ode, a shout out,” and one senses that the quiet power of the book lies in contradictions still unresolved even as the author gains in experience and independence. “I feel often trapped in the person I have been trying to be my entire life,” she says in a touching and revealing statement, one that perfectly echoes the finely calibrated tensions and the tentative triumphs evoked in these pages. “Now I stand, shaky but alive, looking away at my world as a female with the best possible hope.”
Maude Arsenault is a Canadian photographer, artist and curator who is particularly invested in the representation of woman in the context of domesticity and intimacy. She is interested in the notion of identity and space and the place of women and youth in our changing society. In 2013, with a third child on its way and a commitment into pursuing her journey in contemporary photography she founded the online gallery The Print Atelier. Maude also recently completed a Minor in Art History (UDM) and is now undertaking a Master (M.A) in Visual Arts at Université du Québec in Montréal. Maude has worked as an artist and curator on many photography exhibitions and recently curated the international photography selection for Canada’s largest public contemporary art festival, Art Souterrain 2019.
31cm x 24cm x 1cm
Edition of 500