Comfort Objects
Project info

Comfort Objects focuses on children's complex emotional lives and the role physical objects play in meeting psychological needs. A comfort object is a toy or blanket that takes on emotional importance to a child. A physical link to a child's psychological world, often bearing the stains and scars of tears and play. While I did not have a comfort object as a child, my three children have each had one. Like many parents, I've hunted for it at bedtime, sent it along when leaving a child in another person's care, and carefully packed it on trips. It is a conduit for meeting their emotional and psychological needs.

In developmental psychology comfort objects are called "transitional objects" and act as a substitute for the mother-child bond, helping the child navigate separation by providing a stand-in. I am fascinated by this link to parenting, and to motherhood in particular.

The children in my series include my own and those of friends and strangers. The objects are a thread of continuity running through the images, and a means for the children to reveal elements of their emotional lives. Most profoundly for me though, they are a vehicle for pondering childhood and reflecting on the memories that have influenced my life.