Natasha Caruana

Artist Statement:
Lying Still-
Portraits of the ‘Other Woman’ (2005)

I became the ‘other woman’ on February 23rd, 2003. The relationship started, like most affairs, with feelings of naughty excitement. I previously had such respect for marriage but now seemed to enjoy transgressing my established moral boundaries – immersing myself in risky thrill of it.

I was consumed by the fantasy of expensive gifts, secretive dinners and weekends away, spending little time reflecting upon the reality of my situation. Most feelings of guilt were repressed by a desire to maintain my romantic illusions.

On our second anniversary I decided to take my camera with me to photograph our time together only to realise that it wouldn’t be possible. This fact awakened me to the deceit at the heart of the relationship - allowing me to see beyond my naivety and understand the repercussions of our affair.

My personal experience became the genesis for the work ‘Lying Still’. I set out to meet and document the experiences of women like myself – to find out how they felt about being the ‘Other Woman’ and to help me come to terms with my own situation. I placed ads in ‘Time Out’ magazine and numerous local papers asking for women whom were in relationships with married men and were willing to share their story.

The series explores the range of stories and diversity of women whom have experienced affairs with married men – questioning the secretiveness and unease felt by the majority of them. Many continue with their relationships, some recognising it is a ‘half-life’; others enjoy the risqué adventure of their liaisons, whilst many have ended their relationships no longer willing to deal with the emotional instability.