Artist Spotlight: John William Keedy
Written by: Ashley Jannasch
As a conceptual photographer, John William Keedy creates work that explores and challenges what is considered “normal” in society. Contemporary society has strict standards of what is considered normal behavior, though few people actual fit into these defined standards. Keedy’s series It’s Hardly Noticeable consists of conceptual, metaphorical still lives and tableaus following the life of a character suffering from Obsessive Compulsive Disorder and possibly other unspecified anxiety disorders.
These disorders affect the character’s life by modifying his thoughts and behaviors, which Keedy depicts in his images. These behaviors depicted are meant to be commentary on societal standards of “normalcy". The frequency of disorders like these should be acknowledged more by society, rather than swept under the rug or judged as a personal failing. The absurdity of Keedy’s images reflect the absurdity of these strict social constructs.
The two images featured here nicely illustrate the character’s struggle with OCD in the way he very carefully and painstakingly arranges objects. Other images in the series are more metaphorical for this anxiety; for example, Keedy includes images of a glass of milk leaking from several holes that have been drilled into the glass, as well as a rubber glove that has had Band-Aids carefully adhered to it. These images may relate more to how the character feels, rather than his actual routine.
Keedy has a degree in studio art, as well as a second degree in psychology. More of his It’s Hardly Noticeable series can be found here (http://www.johnwilliamkeedy.com/itshardlynoticeable/).