Sex. Motherhood. Individuality. This Artist Provokes.

People have always asked me, “So Mara, you grew up with so many men in your life, are you the “girl” who has no women friends?” This is not the case, I adore women – and without my amazing sisters no one would validate my unique blend of Mara crazy.  Susan Copich, with her latest photographic series entitled “Domestic Bliss” reminds me of  long conversations I’ve had with so many of my friends, but especially my friend Susana.  The calls usually consist of me expressing my inner fantasies and engaging in dialogue about societal rules.

Susana usually reminds me that, I don’t follow that many rules, and sites my constant interactions with the authorities. But it’s not the rules I care so much about – it’s the offspring.  When we become mothers, we know as intuitive, intelligent and responsible women that we must adhere to some guidelines….like not escaping to India for three months to “find ourselves”, but instead taking yoga with an Indian instructor.  

MommyTime

“Mommy Time” from Domestic Bliss Photo Series by Susan Copich (pictured above)

Adrienne Rich, the American Poet wrote about “Motherhood as an institution”, she freely through poetry revealed almost an obsession with retaining one’s self after becoming a mother. The above photograph to me, is an Adrienne Rich poem brought to life.

After I had a baby, I was generously invited by women I didn’t know to join a mommy group. From the first get together, I left feeling depressed.  I left the intellectual stimulation of my work at United Way to discuss baby blankets and teething.  My individuality seemed meaningless, I felt trapped in a sea of emptiness – and felt confused as the role of young woman and mature mother came together.  Leading a “traditional” life was not something I ever thought about, but it happened – and it happened when I was too young to understand the depth of my feelings.  Relating to other women because they have kids, is a ridiculous notion – and it made me feel like I didn’t belong in the club of motherhood.

Because none of my close friends were even in serious relationships at that time, I was lonely on planet motherhood..and forced to find friends who could relate. Only, that proved difficult. I remember meeting other mothers and thinking, are they satisfied being “only” mothers? They discussed their life with spouse and offspring like they were rock stars on stage…So why the hell did I feel like I needed a life outside all this domesticity?

NOW, I know, it’s because like Adrienne Rich, I was obsessed (without knowing) with retaining my self outside of motherhood. And this is when I decided to not discuss my children, when I was out at night. Little did I know, I was embarking on my own feminism experiment all while questioning social norms.

Mothers-Milk--1024x682

“Mother’s Milk” from Susan Copich’s Domestic Bliss Photo Series (Susan pictured above)

Attachment and freedom. Sexuality, Individuality and Motherhood.  I’m writing this as I multi-task giving love and care to my youngest, who’s home sick from school.  Liam saw the above shot, and with eyes wide open said “If you made me do that, I would push you and run”. It’s hard to examine something like motherhood without realizing the economic component of Feminism. I have choices, I was able to stay home today and write.  I don’t have to worry about work- child care..it’s easy for me. I have privilege, and therefore; choices. 

Kids open you up to so much, but allow you the excuse to not take risks. Motherhood is a constant struggle as an individual to adhere to social norms, even when you think they are bullshit and stifling.  The struggle is the judgement that comes with rejecting those unwritten rules.

unnamed

Susan and her daughters. Upstate New York. January 2015.

Fashion Notes: Jacket: Helmut Lang, Black Skinny Jeans: Citizens of Humanity, Boots: Ugg, Sunglasses: Morgenthal Frederics. The girls are wearing leggings by Carrots, Down Jackets by Canada Goose and Boots by Bogg

Susan Copich: Susan is the photographer and artist behind the acclaimed photo series, “Domestic Bliss”.  With a number of collections housed at The Moen Mason Gallery, http://www.moenmasongallery.com.  Susan’s latest, “Domestic Bliss” series is beyond worthy of the attention.   This particular series in Susan’s body of work is based on her personal experiences as a mother and has touched a nerve.  From the moment my friend forwarded me the link to Susan’s photographs, I immediately wanted to talk about these shots.  Susan captures the struggle, and poked fun of it at the same time. Susan Copich’s series is so thought provoking, It has caused me to intellectualize the shit out of women – motherhood- partnership -Susan made me think and that’s the sign of a great artist.  http://susancopich.com

 

 

 

Haute Miami Heat. NYC Drop-Off.

DSC_2287New York City. Fifth Avenue. September 2014.

Love this dad’s Miami Heat hat..see Miami is “cool” even in NYC. And I kind of dig with both ears pierced..

These sneakers are probably a brand I should know, but I don’t..I didn’t have time to ask him… Men who love sneakers spend serious money on them. Love how his daughter is posing like a pro…

Haute Hats. Happiness in Central Park.

DSC_2326DSC_2327Central Park.  New York City.  September 2014.

Obviously, I fell in love with this moment I witnessed on a bench in Central Park. Mother and daughter love, and it came with stylish hats.  The lacy shorts on this mom, look so sweet and remind me of the English Countryside.  When I usually see lace shorts, they look a lot different – and on me, another story 🙂

And then of course the teddy bear, hanging on the bench..this is beyond special. Glad I had the pleasure of capturing it for you…xx

Black Leather and Ice Cream. Haute Mama NYC.

DSC_2307

New York City. September 2014. Ice Cream Truck on Fifth Avenue.

First of all, I told you guys EXPOSED BRAS are “in”.  I couldn’t’ crop this woman out of the photo, so here is an example of the “bra frenzy” happening right now.

It’s tough to look put together on a hot September day.  Especially dealing with kids and sticky ice cream.  This Mama does it well. I love the way black clothing looks on blondes – and black leather.

Picture me (Mara) in this look, I would probably look like a cast member of the Jersey Shore..I could not pull it off. But this mom looks great.

NYC is a visual playground..and the styles vary like no other city. Happy Tuesday friends. I will be happy if I get to shower today 🙂

Haute NYC. Diversity and Exposure at Drop-Off.

DSC_2266_2

New York City. September 2014.

Yes. It’s a city filled with delicious opportunities to immerse yourself in other cultures…that’s New York.  You can learn about every country in the world,  by simply talking to your cab driver.

I realize this is not a “fashion” shot, but it’s a human shot..a religious Jewish family spending a Sunday at the park together. One of the reasons, I adore New York – you are constantly exposed to new cultures, languages and religions.  And with exposure comes friendships and naturally acceptance….

Tight Bun. Prada. A Little Stomach. Haute NYC.

DSC_2281DSC_2285New York City. Fifth Avenue. September 2014.

This mom has the most important fashion accessory..Confidence. She knows how to wear clothing, I love her elegant bun and big pearls combined with a slight crop top.

Fashion Notes: Hot Pink Prada Bag, Harem Pants, Crop-Top, Silver Chain, Oversized Pearls, Tight Hair Bun

Mara. NYC Drop-Off. Zara. Chanel. Cut-Off’s.

unnamed-1

Mara. Upper East Side. New York City. September 2014.

Here I am, it’s a hot day in New York.  I’m showing a little belly and loving the proportions of my new Zara blazer.  Snake skin and animal print patterns, are usually not my thing.  Mostly, because my brothers tell me I look like my Nana, who had a thing for leopard print.

When wearing animal prints, you don’t have to look like a grandmother in Miami Beach – and by the way, I adore the “grandma in Miami Beach” look! But you can mix the print with something casual, and it combines so well.

 

Haute Fashion Designer Papa. NYC Drop-Off

10341727_713740338690266_8185169629282829417_n

Jay. Dad. Writer. Fashion Designer. New York City. June 2014

Jay is a fashion designer, owner of Jay Kos http://www.jaykos.com and writes in the Style section of The New York Observer, http://observer.com/author/jay-kos/.  He recently published a piece about why men should “hit the bottle” and don fragrance daily.  While I personally love the smell of “man o’natural”, it’s pretty sexy to smell a slight (and I mean slight, don’t bathe in fragrance like you are a 15 year old) fragrance on a man.  I love more “hippie” scents like fragrant oils and patchouli.  I also enjoy smelling the cheesy colognes of my Miami youth – it just does something to me.  Jay’s article will help guide all you manly men toward choosing the fragrance that pleases your senses.

Jay is a designer, a creator and loves all aspects of design.  Jay describes his clothing line; “rock-n-roll mixed with classics, so from python jeans to baby blue suits all made in Italy and France.”  Additionally this writer and designer is expanding to chocolatier, with a line of Jay Kos chocolate bars coming out next month.

When in NYC, check out Jay Kos on Mott Street or visit his website, www.jaykos.com.

unnamed

Fashion Notes for above photo: Jay: Apparel and accessories (including jewelry) all Jay Kos.  Jay’s son: t-shirt: Kitson Kids, jeans: Finger in the Nose, hat: Knicks, necklaces: Jay Kos

 

Haute Barbara. Mothers Day Drop-Off.

NMS_1054

Barbara. New York City. May 2014.

Fashion Notes: pocketbook: Henry Beguelin, Raincoat: Poles purchased in Paris, Boots: JP Tods, Leggings: American Apparel, Ring: Chunky vintage

My mother is a chic woman.  I have vivid memories of her picking me up from school.  Even as a young child, I thought to myself, “Damn. This woman has serious class and style, when am I going to catch on?”

As most of you know, I am the youngest of four, and only girl – which would usually mean free rain of my mother’s clothing/shoes/accessories.  Only my brothers, as you may know, also liked wearing my mother’s clothing.  Fine, it was because her clothing was pretty tailored and classic and boys wore it well.

The issue was a funky, vintage loving girl like me had a hard time finding clothing I could wear from my mom’s closet, and she wasn’t keen on me re-designing with a scissor.   Her collection included classic button downs, blazers, gorgeous scarfs, leather handbags, classic boots, heels and flats.  The huge problem, was exactly that, her huge size 10 1/2 feet.  I still drool over her collection of shoes, and even for someone who pretty much will wear any size as long as it looks good, I really can’t pull off a size 10 1/2…even in boots.  What a shame!

My mother never understood how she produced a petite daughter – she calls me the runt, and I guess I really am.   To this day, my mom tries to give me her stuff, and I see the fancy label, and I really want it to look great on me, but it doesn’t…My mom has always loved my unique sense of fashion and taught me a great deal about classic style, understated style.  She would never wear huge gold hoops, gold nails and 6 inch heels – but man that woman certainly appreciates her daughter who wears just that!  Guess I will just have to stick to stealing her POCKETBOOKS.

Happy Mother’s Day xx