Experimental photographic mixed media artist Shae Detar released her debut book Another World through Skeleton Key Press. This collection of hand-painted photographs submerges its viewers into a utopic pocket-dimension governed by Mother Earth and the feminine mystique. Populated exclusively by women, Another World presents an alternate reality in which unabashed, innate beauty of the nude female form is openly revered and different body types are cherished rather than judged.
Blurring the divide between contemporary art and fashion photography, the self-taught modelturned- artist embraces a barebones, body-confident vision of femininity. Far removed from material amenities and tactile assurances, Another World defiantly thrusts its protagonists into sprawling expanses of wilderness. Unmarred by societal conventions, each woman basks in her own strength and fragility simultaneously.
In his foreword for Another World, Azu Nwagbogu writes, “For all its ethereal variety of landscape, it is women’s bodies which are the focus of the images in Another World. There is a sensual celebration of fleshly reality in the different poses — writhing, contorted, proudly upright or lying in relaxed repose — of these bodies. Painted-on color is used to accentuate these differences and at the same time to highlight that women’s bodies, regardless of their ‘desirability’ or conformity to conventional beauty ideals, have an absolute validity of existence independent of the consuming, objectifying male gaze.”
Utilizing a modernized inversion of an antiquated hand-painting technique popularized during the 19th century, Detar cloaks each work in otherworldly nostalgia, an earnest restlessness for something yet to be experienced yet comfortingly familiar. And while she navigates her artistic practice as a form of escapism, Another World undeniably mirrors our own reality, in which acknowledgement and acceptance of natural beauty is manifesting itself into a widespread cultural movement.
Shae’s work has been featured by Vogue Italia, Vogue.com, I-D Magazine, AnOther Magazine, Vice, Hero Magazine, Creative Review, Marie Claire Italia, Interview Magazine, Dazed, Grazia, The New Yorker, Elle UK, Marie Claire, HuffPost, New York Magazine, Forbes, Nylon, Style.com, Teen Vogue, Blouin Artinfo, Vogue NL, Fast Company and Refinery29. She has shot covers for New York Magazine and BLINK Magazine. Shae exhibits her work internationally.