‘Shadow Work’ by Jo Chukualim is a visual exploration of both the safety and anxiety felt when gathering in different spaces.
Jo Chukualim is an artist whose work interrogates the idea of identity and its connection with psychology and mental health. Photography is her most efficient way of vividly communicating her experiences and perspectives as a means of catharsis, providing others with a starting point to engage in otherwise difficult conversations about mental health.
As someone with a lived experience of depression and anxiety, she understands the need for more accurate representation of the nuances and diversity in mental health. Her work draws inspiration from her background in both the arts and sciences to develop new forms of communication and engagement, inviting the viewer to consider different ways of being.
‘Shadow Work’ is a visual exploration of both the safety and anxiety felt when gathering in different spaces. In recent years, I experienced more intensely what it meant to show up as someone from a marginalised group. Following a global pandemic, it felt like the world was experiencing something a lot of us were already familiar with, the vulnerability of stepping outside your home.
In 2022, whilst parts of our society are ready to take their first steps outside, some of us are more reluctant to return to ‘normal.’ As a community we have a lot of inequalities to work through. Before we can all gather safely and come as we are, we need to confront our proverbial shadows.