Denise Prince is an Austin-based, American artist working in a variety of media including film, photography, and performance. Influenced by conceptual and critical theory at CalArts in Los Angeles, Prince has worked closely with clinical philosopher and Lacanian psychoanalyst Charles Merward since 2007.
Prince is best known for her work redefining beauty, “beyond the veil of ego.” Using the visual syntax of fashion and style photography, she obstructs desire by refusing to honor its imaginary hierarchies. Her work has been clarified, confronted, and interpreted by psychoanalyst members of the World Association of Psychoanalysis and has been featured on PBS Television.
Captivating Not Captive uses the language of fashion photography to exalt those whose physical appearance does not align with the contemporary white Western standards. This ongoing work represents a decade of carefully cultivated relationships with survivors of physical trauma, people born with conditions and others who have found their own beauty and includes self-asserting quotes from the subjects, photographs, video and performance art. Their aim, as one model put it, is to “Change the way people see beauty.”