A Georgian Mother’s Daughter: A Photography Series

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A Georgian Mother’s Daughter: A Photography Series

When I think of the word family, I think of a lot of people but most importantly, I think of my mother: Eka. I think of her because growing up, I have realised that she was my role model within my family. I looked up to her because she defined and taught me what it means to be a strong woman.

Eka became a mother in 1996 and again in 2001, at the ages of 16 and 21, in our home country of Georgia, Tbilisi. This year I turn 20 and I realise how different my life is compared to my mother’s. At just 19 years old, I feel that I am unable to take care of myself let alone have a 4-year-old, pregnant with a second child. It takes a lot of selflessness to become a mother and create a family, which I believe not many are willing to be in our generation. Including myself sometimes.

mother

Eka by Mariam

mother

Eka by Mariam

mother

Eka and Katy

mother

Eka and Mariam

Even though we have our ups and downs just as many relationships do, I know that she has tried her best to be there for me through everything.

I will always appreciate the memories we have shared and will continue to share such as making up dances; singing Adele karaoke songs at the top of our lungs when it’s just us two at home and most importantly her teaching me how to make the best food – especially Khinkali (Georgian dumplings).

mother

Eka and Katy

mother

Eka and Mariam

For my last term’s university project ‘Visualising Ideologies’, I decided to look on motherhood which for the first time enabled me to look back and reflect on my childhood. Using archives and research, I tried to answer the questions, How does motherhood differ to fatherhood? and, What similarities do all mothers share?

mother

Eka and Katy

mother

Eka and Mariam

For my last term’s university project ‘Visualising Ideologies’, I decided to look on motherhood which for the first time enabled me to look back and reflect on my childhood. Using archives and research, I tried to answer the questions, How does motherhood differ to fatherhood? and, What similarities do all mothers share?

mother

Eka, Katy and Mariam

mother

Eka, Katy and Mariam

Throughout my project I was inspired by Caleb Cole’s project Odd One Out. In Cole’s series, he removed all of the insignificant people in his archives apart from one specific person. Therefore, when working on my project, I decided that it was important to remove everyone in my images apart from my mother, sister or myself.

The meaning behind my final body of work is very personal to me because at this moment in time, my parents are in the process of getting a divorce.

This means my definition of the word “family” has changed drastically and I am now able to have a wider perspective about the meaning of this specific word. Although the definition of the word has changed, my love for my family remains the same.

If you’d like to see more of Mariam’s work then go ahead and follow her photography page for more!

About Post Author

Henry Tolley

(he/him) Henry a previous Editor-in-Chief of Chapter Z magazine. He specialises in LGBTQ+, film and in-depth community/cultural features.
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