ARTIST: KIRSTEN LEWIS
UNSUPERVISED is an intimate look at the suburban family when no one else is watching. There were 2.62 billion people actively using social media worldwide in 2018 proving that itʼs one of the most used forms of communication today. While there are incredible benefits to virtual platforms such as Facebook, Snapchat and Instagram one of the biggest drawbacks is isolation due to a profound pressure to appear perfect in the eyes of the global audience. After becoming a mother myself in 2016 I personally felt the effects of this unavoidable, self induced expectation, predominately on mothers and their families. This collection of pictures is the antithesis of the traditional family portrait, an honest glimpse into childhood and parenthood and a documentary project that has taken 8 years to complete by spending full days with families in their homes. The hope is that this project serves as a reminder that families, children and parents, are indeed not perfect and that is where the beauty lies. By exposing the wild, the mess, the challenges and undeniable love, UNSUPERVISED is meant to show parents that they are not alone, that we are all much more alike than we are different and that there is much comfort in that.
Kirsten is a documentary photographer based in Denver, Colorado. Her work keeps her on the road 200 - 250 days a year, both domestically and internationally. Over the last 5 years she has taught on the International platform Creative Live on 3 separate occasions and has been attributed to propelling a movement to provide documentary coverage of families commercially, specifically Day In The Life sessions, worldwide. Outside of commercial work and a successful mentoring career, Kirsten is a long-form photographer whose essays focus on childhood, parenthood and overcoming adversity and challenge including gender identity, special needs, women in male dominated athletics, infertility and fatal juvenile disease. She is married to street photographer Greg Bethmann and together they are raising their strong, independent, empathetic, zealous daughter Byrdie Mae.