Brooklyn-based fashion photographer Tarik Carroll’s work has appeared in top fashion publications, People Magazine, and even The New York Times. During his years as a top fashion shooter, though, the artist increasingly felt isolated. He felt little connection to the hard-bodied models he was called upon to photograph. He longed to diversify his work and challenge the notion that male models should all stand precisely six feet tall and wear forty-regular jackets.
Carroll’s new exhibit at the Herron School of Art and Design at IUPUI, “EveryBODY IS A GOOD BODY: The RE-formation of Beauty Standards” offers a stout protest against all that the fashion industry holds dear. The models featured in the exhibit look nothing like those Carroll photographed for years as a top fashion photographer. The photographs are of men with bodies like ours. The images emerged from Carroll’s “Everyman” project that made the artist a star in the world of fine art and a media darling.
“Being a fashion photographer in the industry for thirteen years, I have more than enough experience to create very high-quality campaign imagery,” Carroll said confidently as he stood beside his work. “I wanted to reimagine things from a lens that really showcases a wide spectrum of body types, because representation is very important.”
Tarik’s work challenges gender norms as well. The artist argues men are every bit as insecure about their bodies as are women but hide their insecurities behind a shield of hyper-masculinity.
“Our insecurities come out in different ways,” the artist said. “We’re also taught not to speak out about those insecurities because men are taught not to really emote or not to showcase emotion. A lot of that is rooted in toxic masculinity and we have to do a lot of unlearning. There’s beauty in being vulnerable. There’s beauty in being able to admit that you might not feel too good in your body.”
Tarik’s passion for infusing his work with diversity stems at least in part from his own struggles with body image. His many conversations with models about their insecurities have added to that passion. It becomes clear when speaking to the artist that he has been liberated by his breakout project.
“Men can wear makeup,” he said with a smile as he pointed to the image of four men that launched the Everyman Project. “Men can put glitter in their beard and really create that space of freedom and expression and showcase that joy!”
Tarik Carroll’s “EveryBODY IS A GOOD BODY” exhibit will hang in the Herron School of Art and Design until Tuesday, April 26.
The Full Circle Nine Gallery (FC9) will feature Robert Neat and “Celebrate History in Color,” a commemorative show on impactful figures, for First Friday, 6 p.m. – 9 p.m. on Friday, June 4th. He joined us today to share more about the event. Here’s more from him:
“As a young man I always loved art that pushed the boundaries of social issues,” Neat said. “I believe art can be used for social change, and to bring attention to social issues. This show is meant to make you think. Do you like it? Do you hate it? Either way would be a success! It caused you to have an emotion. But the biggest significance is that we never forget those amazing individuals that sacrificed so much.”
Highlighted historical figures, events, and symbolism include Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Anne Frank, as well as Stonewall and the Pink Triangle, as Neat hopes visitors remember and reflect.
About Robert Neat:
Robert Neat is an Indianapolis-based mixed media artist, combining acrylic and oil paints, pencil, ink and glitter to capture his imagery. Neat says he can utilize all media in the quest to create his art, and loves to play and explore what those media can do and has practiced since he was a young child.
“I have always been attracted to colors, shadows, lights, and anything that sparkled,” Neat said. “When I was younger, I would accept commissions, but soon became bored with creating what others thought was ‘art.’ I now only do work that I enjoy and find pleasing or interesting. As my art evolves, I find myself creating art that address the social issues we all face. I also find myself wanting to capture great moments in history, memorialize famous figures in history.”
About the Full Circle Nine Gallery:
The Full Circle Nine Gallery operates as an artist cooperative gallery, with each of the member artists and the board dividing gallery duties and artists roles. The artists will work together to help each other advance in skill and practice, as well as to bring success to the gallery.
With over two dozen artists occupying a large, three-room space of the more factory-reminiscent portion of the Circle City Industrial Complex, Full Circle Nine offers a wide variety of art forms, media, and approaches.
To better work within the COVID-19 shutdown and restrictions, the Full Circle Nine Gallery has hosted Virtual First Fridays, on the gallery’s Facebook page, @fullcircleninegallery, as well as on its Instagram, @fc9gallery, during the typical First Friday hours. During that time, the artists will host live streams, post videos, or showcase photos of their latest work, in an effort to continue to connect with fans and patrons. The gallery has also resumed weekend hours, 12-4pm on Saturdays and Sundays, with health precautions, such as required masks.
Full Circle Nine Gallery is located at 1125 Brookside Ave., Indianapolis, IN, 46202, in the South Studios section of the Circle City Industrial Complex.
For more information, or for artists interested in joining the Full Circle Nine, please visit Fullcirclenine.com
In March, the City of Carmel will partner with the Carmel Arts Council on a special celebration of National Disability Awareness Month by seeking out artists of all ages and disabilities, residing in Carmel, to submit their art work for a special exhibit to be viewed both virtually and throughout the Carmel Arts & Design District during the Saturday evening Meet Me on Main event on March 13.
These wonderful works of art will include all art mediums, including three-dimensional projects and handmade crafts. They will be featured on the Carmel Arts Council website and be shared on social media throughout the month of March.
Wendy Kiefel, Carmel Advisory Committee on Disability Board Member and Laura Campbell, Carmel Advisory Committee on Disability Board Member of the Carmel City Council joined us today to share more about the event and why it is important for all to see and participate.
This special observance is being coordinated by the Carmel Advisory Committee on Disability. That committee was established through in 2019, for the purpose of fostering a culture of inclusivity within the City of Carmel.
The Committee represents the diverse needs and interests of disabled people within our City, provides comment on the City’s current services, policies and practices and provides informed input on the development and assessment of future City projects and services that impact people with disabilities. The Committee also works with local employers to employ more people with disabilities and helps create positive social activities to enrich the lives of people with disabilities, their families and caregivers.
For more information, visit CarmelArtsCouncil.org.