Poignant Portrait Series Features Women in Their Ex-Lovers’ Shirts

If you've ever kept an article of clothing from a past lover, you probably know how bittersweet that it can be. Countless memories you have with this person are wrapped up in an inanimate object, and sometimes it's the only thing you have left of the relationship. Photographer Carla Richmond and writer Hanne Steen explore this sentiment in their collaborative portrait and written word series titled Lovers Shirts. The poignant images feature women wearing their ex-lovers' clothing.

The moving portraits capture the subjects in a reflective state. This is because Richmond and Steen did not simply photograph them, but had a conversation with the wearers about their relationship. They asked them memory-provoking questions and then recorded their reactions. The anonymous responses were then strung together as unending poems.

The photographs of Lovers Shirts probably resonate with many of us. We see the series' subjects wearing tattered t-shirts, over-sized flannel, and even a garment that says “Don't Give Up.” Some of them cling to the clothing while others look more composed. But whatever the situation may be, there's one connecting thread – a love that has been lost.

Carla Richmond website and Hanne Steen website
via [Feature Shoot]

Sara Barnes

Sara Barnes is a Staff Editor at My Modern Met, Manager of My Modern Met Store, and co-host of the My Modern Met Top Artist Podcast. As an illustrator and writer living in Seattle, she chronicles illustration, embroidery, and beyond through her blog Brown Paper Bag and Instagram @brwnpaperbag. She wrote a book about embroidery artist Sarah K. Benning titled 'Embroidered Life' that was published by Chronicle Books in 2019. Sara is a graduate of the Maryland Institute College of Art. She earned her BFA in Illustration in 2008 and MFA in Illustration Practice in 2013.
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