Jennifer Mien Mien Lin
Transparency in Three Dimensions
A Photographic Portal into the Soul of a Woman
by Misha Beiser
Jennifer Mien Mien Lin’s artistic style and personality leave a deeply moving and motivational impression on all those who interact with her and her photographs. Her work “began as a way of being heard; of not being silenced anymore,” as she puts it. Having grown up in Taipei, Jennifer felt neglected as a the youngest female child in a culture that values Confucian preference for sons, specifically the first-born.
It was during university that she felt liberated from this gender inequality and started expressing herself through photography. Jennifer focused on the female form, exploring her “aesthetic fascination with the navigation of the female body through foreign environments and visual relationships that are forged between space and body,” she says. “I photograph women to empower. To engage. To evoke. To be a mirror.”
Having now exhibited globally, with a huge body of work and published books, Jennifer continues to expand her innovative techniques, always communicating clear narrative through layered imagery. Her book, Women of the Sun uses colorful, provocative imagery to document the deeply emotional journey of establishing confidence to express herself freely. Another book of hers, Infinite Exile, is an homage to Sylvia Plath, conveying her perspective of the specifically feminine creative process.
For her newest project, Jennifer collaborated with designer John Briscella to create Lines of Transparency. “I always found it quite ironic that photography is essentially a flat two-dimensional medium depicting three-dimensionality,” says Jennifer. The pair has therefore cut custom photographs into sheets of “hard material such as stainless steel and brass to make (the complete work) see-through in a way to subvert the medium itself.”
When moved back and forth, or around in a circular motion, the two sheets of cut metal give a surprisingly realistic three-dimensional effect to a two-dimensional image. “As artists, the work we create is really a portal into our own souls. So when I create my photographs, I allow my viewers to see inside me to see my true authenticity.”