The Girl Document

Edith Maybin


Edith Maybin continues to explore the liminal space between girl and woman, this time through the use of still life photography. Beautiful and troubling, these in-camera constructions engage the viewer with both lucid detail and incomplete dreams. Fold upon fold, a singular portal unveils a deceitful truth, double-minded (untrustworthy) like photography itself.

Themes of sexuality, pain, maturation, independence and fear exist for both mother and daughter in this pivotal stage.

Maybin’s references find a common language within her layered dialogue. Artifice confuses the real, much as in Dorothea Tanning’s figurative paintings, while visual elements from early 20th century surrealist film are suggested to form a rhetoric of transition, an awkward adolescence. These photographs for Maybin continue the journey from the place of departure within the final images of the Garden Document. The external is left behind for an interior realm, the surface penetrated in search of the soul.

Maybin’s work appears in a number of publications including The New Yorker Magazine, The Times, UK and various international public collections such as The National Gallery, Canada, Canadian Museum of Contemporary Photography, The National Portrait Gallery, UK and private collections including The Sir Elton John Photography Collection.