Sunday, July 26, 2009

Welcome!

We all held her. She was active but very peaceful.

Madeline Weimer Ziehm

So, yesterday, my sister had a baby! She was 7lbs 5oz and 19 inches long. I took these pictures about and hour after she was born. Mom and baby (and dad!) are doing well.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Myself as Otto Dix


Melissa Weimer, 2009 Myself as Otto Dix

Otto Dix was a promising and solicitous young painter at the turn of the last century. He painted this self-portrait as a young man of 21, while attending the Dresden Academy of Fine Arts.
The work shows a skeptical young man on the cusp. His gaze toward the future is leery and determined. Yet, he shows himself holding a flower, a sign of hope and optimism. His grasp is light and awkward.
Barely two years later, he was an enlisted soldier. Dix’s experiences in WWI, where he was stationed on the Western Front and seriously wounded several times, and WWII, where he was persecuted by the Nazis and held as a POW for some time, directed his imagery for the rest of his life. His work was critical of the Weimar Republic’s bourgeois class. He hideously depicted the atrocities of war and drew attention to the darker side of life, unsparingly depicting prostitution, violence, old age, and death.
My own personal ancestry is tied to this same land. My last name being a common Americanization of Weimar, spelled W-E-I-M-E-R.
How could Otto Dix have known the horrors that lie ahead for him as a 21-year-old man? Yet his expression seems to tell us that he does. This remake of his portrait is my homage to his life and work, and also, to the cautious optimism that he displays on the verge of the rest of his life. Looking forward to future unknowns.

Self-Portrait from a Past-Life (as a Soviet Bloc Whore)


Melissa Weimer, 2008 Self-Portrait form a Past-Life (as a Soviet Bloc Whore)

This photo shoot, in my grandmother’s mink coat, was a way of trying to express my sense of lose and sorrow over her death and also to demonstrate my strong feelings of connectedness to my past, and my family.
The resulting image is haunting. The girl in the picture barely looks like me. Does she look sad, serious, somber, or resigned? All four, perhaps. She possesses a stoic strength and an extreme vulnerability. I get a sense of survivalism and guarded pride. Hiding her true self in an effort to preserve it.
To me, she looks like a prostitute. A reluctant purveyor of the worlds' oldest profession.
In the shared history of women the world over, we know that most women, of the past (and many of the present), have been sexually exploited through human trafficking and sexual servitude. Today, as in the past, many women and girls working in prostitution and vice have been coerced into the lifestyle and held there under threat or through force. Those who escape that fate often find themselves forced into an arranged marriage against their will, and others are mothers forced to live with an abusive man in order to support and protect herself and/or her children.
Today the largest numbers of women facing the disgusting fate of human trafficking are from floundering countries that make up the old Soviet Union.
Once I saw the image I knew that she was me, but she was also another woman. One who stands in for past women. Women who wear their beauty and their body as a shield, a blanket, a life raft, a weapon and often times as a scarlet letter.
I believe strongly in reincarnation. It explains connections, memories and feeling, that I have, that are distant and unrelated to my current self.
Wearing the fur coat of my maternal grandmother makes me feel close to the past and its relation to my own personal history. While searching for a literal connection to this past, I happened upon a transcendent image and realized a connection to all women and their inherent female cross to bare - past, present and future.

Feather Lofts

After




Before


I didn't take and "During" pictures. I was too busy! We had a great turn out and I think the work was well received.
Thanks to everyone who came out to support us!

Special thanks to Jill and Jason! xoxoxoxox

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Illustrated Women

Ladies and Gentlemen, Nikki "Balls" Lugo.
Below is a shot from the Chicago Tattoo Co. collection, one of many that served as an inspiration for this shoot.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Self Portraits



Self Portrait from a Past Life (as an Eastern European Whore)

CORRECTION:
After consulting with a close friend and Russian, I have reworked this title to:
Self Portrait from a Past Life (as a Soviet Bloc Whore)

Monday, July 13, 2009

The Amazing and Talented.....Nikki Lugo!

Nikki is in town until Wednesday doing a guest spot at Chicago Tattoo Co.


She was able to take some time out of her busy schedule to collaborate on a photo shoot with me. Nikki modeled an early 20th Century look for an upcoming Then and Now. Gorgeous photos Coming Soon....

Friday, July 10, 2009

Bastards

Have you seen this before?
This is my second...it is a letter from the City of Chicago Department of Revenue. In three photos it shows me " breaking the law" and charges me $100.00.
I hate these big brother mother fuckers.
FUCK YOU DEPT OF REVENUE!

You'll get yours.

Thursday, July 02, 2009

Coming Attractions


Awesome Baby Shower

Our close family friend, Margaret, chillin' at the shower. She is pregnant with twins, and due in October! Congrats!!


Who is More Excited!?!

So, I have been putting it off for a while, but there is no more denying it, MY SISTER IS KNOCKED UP!
She, along with her husband, are expecting a girl in the next week or two. Our entire family is sooo excited but I want to give the prize to .....
DAD!
For being so thrilled. This normally stoic guy is damn near giddy at the idea of a little granddaughter, as exhibited in these pictures below.
My parents.

My dad and sister.

And here with his long time, dear friend Kris.