Artist statement and photos by Ange Groenwoud
Sweet Intervention, photo by Ange Groenwoud
Ange Groenwoud: I was born is Australia in a small and conservative country town. I was an only child to sheep farming parents. As a child I was always drawing and loved making drawings of an imaginary sister that I never had. One day at high school there was a girl called Jackie, who could have been my sister, and although I occasionally overheard the boys talk about her and how much they fancied their chances with her, they never got close to her. Instead, my friendship with her was the sister bond I so needed. I never saw my feelings for her as lesbian, so never saw the need to come out, that need came much later.
My sister Jakie showed me that life does not need to be bitter and helped me pluck the strength to leave my abusive marriage. It is this history that has inspired the artist in me to make a series of artworks dedicated to sweetness.
Every time Jackie (whom I had a crush on before I got married to a sheep farmer) and I met in our high school days, it was like a chocolate box was given to me in an otherwise dreary day. Then some ten years into the marriage, Jackie had returned to the district again for a few months. We met up and it was like ‘old times’. It was only then that I considered that my feelings had a label. Jackie told me that she was lesbian and out, so it meant I was lesbian too!
Sweet Chocolate Box
I began to image that if chocolate boxes came with lesbian pictures, how would they look? So I began a series of The Sweet Chocolate Box lesbian images. Some may find these too sweet, but I need to O.D., on sweetness from time to time, doesn’t everyone?
I wonder if the makers of chocolate boxes ever will take them? Can you image how lovely it would be to present you lover a box of chocs with one of these pictures for her birthday or Valantines Day?
To make my art accessible, I’m thinking that it may be nice to make these available as downloads. Anyone who buys the images can print them out so that they can be stuck to a choc box and given as that ‘special’ gift to that ‘special’ love in your life. Or think of the fun you can have if there is a special lady you want to approach, but don’t know how she feels about ’wimmen-to-wimmen’. How would she respond to a box of chocs with one of these pics? If she responds negatively, you’ve planted a seed. If she responds positively, you’ve gained your dream. Sugar sweet has its merits.
Sweet Friction, photo by Ange Groenwoud
Sweet Whispers, photo by Ange Groenwoud
Sweet Relaxation, photo by Ange Groenwoud
Australian artist and queer woman Ange (Greta-Angelique) Groenwoud is based in Melbourne, Australia. Five years ago she realized that her painting skills could be morphed to work in photography. So she developed her own style, which she calls ‘Photopaintings’. Her series of staged erotic photographs titled ’Sweet Chocolate Box’ was made in Melbourne between March 2012 to Feburary – 2013. They are photographic collages in which Ange has staged herself as all the nude women. She tells, “Each picture can take days even weeks to make. I add things to suit the mood and the look. It’s like being director, artist, and model all in one, it’s satisfying and great fun!”