For the last couple of months, Samantha of Samantha Scavo Photography has been working on a poignant series of photographs entitled “Don’t Touch Me,” a portrait series that ties directly into the #MeToo movement, drawing attention to issues of personal autonomy, space, and violations against those rights.
“‘’Don’t Touch Me” was inspired by my desire to empower others.” Samantha describes. “I always seek to highlight truth in my work. In this case, I wanted to focus on personal space.
“Personal space is so easily violated in an attempt to make others feel small or inferior, so this series was my way to allow others to take back their space.”
She put out a call for participants in late May, and the short portrait sessions took place at Olio in Peabody, a multi-purpose event venue right on Main Street Downtown.
Prior to the sessions, one of which was in late May and the other in June of 2019, Samantha had her participants share a story of one time when their space was violated. She then used these stories as projections onto a wall The participants would then stand in front of these stories and hold a sign in their own handwriting which reads “Don’t Touch Me.”
“Since I am just beginning my career as a photographer, I wanted my first photo series to be experiential and profound. I wanted it to be important and empowering,” Samantha said. “It needed to represent the kind of work I hope to do throughout my professional life.”
Joey Phoenix is a performance artist and the Managing Editor of Creative North Shore. Follow them on Twitter @jphoenixmedia. If you have an idea for a story, feature, or pictures of adorable llamas, feel free to send them a message at firstname.lastname@example.org