These images are part of a self-portraits series called "Burden". The name of the series conveys that something precious and banal like your hair can give you an unnecessary burden that is also linked to absurd stereotypes about gender roles and how a woman and a man should look. At least, it was for me and it took me time to realize how social norms were indirectly deciding for me, as my hair became something that no longer resonated with me, at the same time it was hard to let go of the concept that my long hair represents greater femininity and effort, but I didn't realize this because I don't have the privilege of analyzing all this because I have to move on with my career and I need money to eat. I have like a year trying to take these photos to finally cut my hair.
The intention of these images is to describe the relation that I have with my hair, you can see me, trying to emerge between my hair because normally is covering my face, my neck is down because my hair weights and cause me headaches, and also you can see that I have a lot of hair meaning that it is difficult to manage it. It is tiresome to comb it, to take care of it, and I know what are you thinking: “why do you keep it? You can cut it!” -Yes-, I’m going to, this serie is a goodbye to my hair, I know it sounded like I hated it but I also I love it, you see I'm 34 years old, since high school I started to grew my hair keeping it considerable long, for me it was normal to receive comments on the streets about my hair from strange people, "so beautiful hair" "I love your braids" "are you using extensions?" "do you sell it?", and it's not like my hair is a national treasure but from my perspective it was something very meaningful because it gave me a lot of confidence to the point I thought if I was cutting my hair I would lose my appeal, my image would be lost. That's why I wanted to take these self-portraits, to give it a proper goodbye honoring its time with me. Goodbye hair.
Natalia Barragán Orozco