James Baroz

Artist Statement

My photographic practice begins to explore the relationships within my close inner circle as it permits an intimate perspective into their lives and anxieties as young adults coming of age. I am interested in the diaristic constellation of friends, lovers, and self-portraits. These degrees of emotional uncertainty are affirmed by the at-times hazy or out of focus photographs, and whose gestures are at times difficult to decipher between vulnerability, isolation, and exhilaration. Through romanticizing my own life and the mundane in between moments, I investigate what it means to be alive. 

I am using color 35mm and medium format film to delve deeper into these ideas and experimenting with ways to create more chance and risk in subject matter that is as fleeting as growing up. I also interrogate my own performance of masculinity through an on-going series of self-portraits to visualize the interior self and physical body. 

Furthermore, my project: “Temporarily, Permanent”, in-progress, focuses on the DIY tattoo subculture scene in Chicago, IL. This body of work I am interested in the form of self expression that tattoos take place within our community and what it means to tattoo yourself and friends out of curiosity and experimentation. I am influenced by how these artists operate outside of their homes and studios, as well as the decisions we make to permanently mark our own bodies. By deep hanging, I am learning how it feels to tattoo myself and others and what it could mean to rebel against traditional tattoo culture. To reclaim ownership and individuality over our own bodies. It inspires me that we can be courageous enough to do so. 

James Baroz

Using Format