As a mediator between opposite realities of the human experience, Annette Merrild uses photography, painting and sculpture as means of communication. Her two photographic series on Self Bondage, titled ‘Self Control’ and ‘Sculptural paintings’, reach beyond the limits of power-crazed sexual differentiation. She places her models using choreographic instructions in a stance that emphasizes the intrinsic value of the ropes, in dramatic visual forms that are free from all classical painting tradition or experimental photography influences. The bondages are woven by practitioners themselves and worn hidden under their actual day clothes. The purposes can be the appeal of self-control or the enjoyment to bypass societal norms. Women do not submit to a dominant sexual subject as objects, and the bondage does not restrict their autonomy of decision-making in any way. Merrild’s images simultaneously represent an emancipated interpretation of female sexuality, witnessing a point of view on the present moment in the history of feminine representations and deserving to be located in the feminist discourse and an important contribution to post-modern art.
Annette Merrild was born in Denmark in 1972. After studying classical painting technique at the School for Visual Arts in Copenhagen between 1992 and 93, in 1995 she worked as a wood carver with Cooperation Akamba Handcrafts Industry in Mombasa, Kenia. From 1996 to 2002, she was a student at Hochschule für Bildende Künste Hamburg and scholar of Werner Büttner and Bernhard Blume, finishing with a Master’s degree. In 2004, she was awarded an honorary diploma by Franz Erhard Walther. Her conceptual photography has been exhibited successfully in Beverly Hills, Hamburg, Copenhagen, London, Madrid, St. Petersburg, Warsaw and Paris. Annette Merrild lives and works in Barcelona.