Beautiful Ambiguities: The Photography of Keisha Scarville

It is a body draped in a white dress, whose shoulders are made bare, whose black skin is illuminated, whose fingers dance and linger in a pool of white salt, whose hand gently cups an old, charred passport photo of a young boy, whose feet border a replica of the same photo, this one not tattered and torn but intact.

In these selected images from the i am here series by photographer Keisha Scarville, the body is present, though never in full—only in parts. Even with this mosaic of parts, it remains a solitary body immersed in both vulnerability and strength. There is no landscape or other figure to eclipse the body’s presence in the frame, except for a few images in which the body engages with a wood-paneled bedroom floor. The artist shares with me that this suite was created in her Brooklyn bedroom. That it was conceived and executed in the space of her home—an interior space, one of intimacy and of privacy—further elevates its elegance and solitary strength. i am here is at its core a relationship with the self.

Read essay in full here.