Fears In Our Lives

Fears accompany us throughout our lives. Some of us are afraid of illness, some are afraid of heights or speed, some are afraid of the prospect of bankruptcy, and some are afraid of aging. Fear of death is the worst and deepest phobia of a human being, hiding a large number of meanings. In simple terms, it is an instinctive, inherent in nature sense of self-preservation. It manifests itself differently for each person and is expressed in a number of additional superficial phobias.

The diversity of existing fears implies a comprehensive study of them. This study is possible not only within the framework of scientific cognition, but also with the help of artistic imagery, which opens up new sides in the cognizing object. In the arts, the theme of fear is presented widely and varied. The various artistic genres contribute to an in-depth analysis of the fear.

The Photographer Captured Her Emotions in A Photo Project

Elena Otvodenko, a photographer from Moscow, Russia, decided to explore the issue of human fears in her artwork. Several years ago her husband’s mother passed away. Among her favorite things, there was a set of mugs, which she loved very much. Elena says “My mother-in-law loved drinking tea from these mugs. It gave her joy and relaxation. Years ago, she passed away. My husband treasured the mugs, they invisibly connected him to his mother’s warmth. One of the mugs accidentally broke and I decided to collect it and take some pictures to capture my feelings about it”.

For this photo project named ‘The Broken Mug’ Elena decided to deviate from traditional digital photography and use analog one, she took pictures with an old film camera which her husband used as a child. Elena made a series of black and white photographs in the genre of modern still life. Using the technique she emphasized the connection between times and generations.

Memories Stored in An Object Create Magnificent Artwork

The broken mug symbolizes death and oblivion. The conditionally acquired experience of death shown in Elena’s artworks provides grounds for cognition and comprehension of this phenomenon. Knowledge of one’s mortality and the finality of subjective existence generates fear of death. Elena highlights the problems of the meaning of life, the purpose of a human being. Fear of death induces us to look at life as at the main value for all mankind.

Another fear that Elena Otvodenko discovers in her art is the fear of losing touch with a bygone generation, with people who were precious to us. Despite the fact that the memories of dead people will forever stay with us, the mind desperately clings to things that are associated with those people. Losing these things, like the mug in Elena’s photographs, brings us new pain and thoughts of losing a piece of our memories and love.

‘The Broken Mug’ photography project helped Elena Otvodenko to put her fears into the picture, and show her inner feelings, distress, and psychological challenges. She hopes it will also help others understand and deal with their fears. 

Tags: photography, artist, Elena Otvodenko, art, photographer, fears, feelings