I am sure Bill Henson’s photographs came into my life before the controversy, but I cannot be certain. I distinctly remember peering into one of his photographs and a haunted, uncertain girl looked back at me as she emerged from the darkness. The photograph asked more questions than it answered. A girl longing to tell me her story yet not sure if she could trust me.
Since then, I read the book about the controversy and ran into further exhibitions in Australia or Europe. Whether photographing adolescents or ancient ruins, Henson’s photographs are always shaped by darkness – whether its the moonlight dancing on pale skin or Greek ruins awakening at dawn – his work always tells a story by forcing the viewer to ask questions. It’s up to you to decide what that story is.
Henson’s use of light and dark to create haunting, ethereal images are what make his photos a work of art, rather than simply a photograph. His images are so nuanced that they enthral you into listening to them and pondering the questions they pose.
It is the darkness, not the light, that creates the story. What is hidden rather than what is revealed.
Vision Board Theme: controversy; darkness; creating art.