Jennifer Georgescu is both a mother and an artist. Her newborn child shaped her “Mother Series”; teaching her about life and death, and how motherhood changes your own perception of yourself. Before childbirth, you are living for yourself; after childbirth, you are living for another human who is dependent upon you to survive in this world.
For her work, Georgescu will be the Griffin Museum’s third John Chervinsky Emerging Photographer Scholarship winner since the award’s inception in 2016.
Photographer John Chervinsky, whose work explored the concept of time, passed away in December of 2015, following a typically resolute battle with pancreatic cancer. The modesty and unassuming character he conveyed in life belies the extent to which he will be missed, not only by his family and friends, but also by the entire photographic community of which he was so proud to be a part.
The Griffin Museum then announced the John Chervinsky Emerging Photographer Scholarship in June 2016 to recognize, encourage and reward photographers with the potential to create a body of work and sustain solo exhibitions. Awarded annually, the scholarship provides recipients with a monetary award, an exhibition of their work at the Griffin Museum of Photography, and a volume from Chervinsky’s personal library of photography books. The scholarship seeks to provide a watershed moment in the professional lives of emerging photographers, providing them with the support and encouragement necessary to develop, articulate and grow their own vision for photography.
In its third year, 130 photographers submitted applications to be considered for the scholarship.
After much thought and consideration the judges (Crista Dix, Laura Moya, Frazier King and Aline Smithson), chose Jennifer Georgescu as the third recipient of the John Chervinsky Emerging Photographer Scholarship.
“Jennifer Georgescu takes complex issues of humanity – motherhood, identity, legacy, mortality, fragility, insignificance – and spins a rich visual narrative that reassures us that we are not alone in figuring these things out,” the judges noted. “Jennifer’s work shows us she is serious about her photography career. Her potential for future growth is evident and we believe this scholarship will assist her in further stretching her imagination.”
Georgescu submitted the Mother Series for consideration for the scholarship.
A call for new submissions will occur on Aug. 1, 2019. The exhibition for Georgescu’s Mother Series will take place at the Griffin Museum in the Griffin Gallery from March 7 – April 4, 2019. A reception will take place on March 10, 2019 from 4 – 6 p.m. An award presentation and brief talk will take place on March 10, 2019 from 6 – 6:30 p.m.
Georgescu said of the body of work: “In 2015, I became a mother. I was prepared for the grueling labor, and sleepless nights, but the loss of my sense of self came as a surprise. I had no time to think and I began to feel like a shell of a person. My early days of motherhood were alienating and awful as well as sentimental and dear. I began to see myself as defined only by a relationship.
“I felt that my son was an appendage of myself; the embodiment of self and other. It was hard to accept that he was a growing, changing person while I was to remain forever split. When he is near my thoughts are entangled around him and when I am away I cannot seem to be the person I was before.
“A child is how we remain on earth; they are our legacies. As I see my son grow I feel my time begin to speed up; I feel my decay. When we think about birth we must realize our death. Motherhood is precious and raw; wonderful and dark.”
Jennifer Georgescu's Statement of Purpose:
“I am a photographer who creates work based on life experiences and my inner dialogue. I am interested in research pertaining to the human condition, relating that information to my own personal life, and having the two intermingle until they have a sense of balance. When I make my pieces, I try to look at my life more objectively by seeing the ways that I am shaped by others, my insatiable fear of death, and how my inner voice has forged my sense of identity. By Working this way, I humble myself with my homogeny and allow for others to relate to my observations and experiences.
“I have been turning the camera on myself for the past 20 years and it has become my way of living and interpreting the world around me. I see the representation of myself as a place holder for the every person. Through narrative tableaux, I transform my self-portraiture into conceptual symbolism and allow a space for my concepts to exist. When creating works about personal and sometimes tragic experiences I am able to describe myself and also relate to others through collective thought and experiences; this is the magic for me.
“Through beauty, awe, and fantasy, I am able to portray topics that are difficult to discuss and invent them in new ways that are more approachable. I see art as a way to bring metaphor and awe to our life events so that we may grow from them. As an introvert and an artist, I spend a lot of time alone practicing and reflecting. When exhibiting my work I am always humbled to connect with others who have had my same deepest inner thoughts. I make work that reflects beauty even in difficult experiences.”
About the Griffin Museum
The Griffin Museum of Photography is located at 67 Shore Road in Winchester. It is open Tuesday through Sunday, noon to 4 p.m. The museum is closed on Monday. General admission is $7 for adults; $3 for seniors. Members and children under 12 are admitted free. Admission is free to all every Thursday, 2 to 4 p.m.
For more information, call 781-729-1158, or visit www.griffinmuseum.org.
The Griffin Museum of Photography was founded in 1992 to provide a forum for the exhibition of both historic and contemporary photography. The Museum houses three galleries dedicated solely to the exploration of photographic arts: The Main Gallery, which features rotating exhibits from some of the world’s leading photographers, the Atelier Gallery and Griffin Gallery dedicated to showcasing the works of prominent, up-and-coming artists.
The Griffin is also home to the extensive archives of museum founder and world-renowned photojournalist Arthur Griffin. The Griffin Museum of Photography also maintains 3 additional satellite galleries: Lafayette City Center Passageway in Boston Downtown Crossing, The Griffin at SoWa last 530 Harrison Avenue in Boston, and The Greater Boston Stage Company in Stoneham Center.
Photographs available upon request