The aim of the project was to examine the representation of the witch in the past, through focusing on the body as it was through it, that the idea of disorder was quelled often by linking the witch with the anti-maternal.
I was drawn to the various portrayals of the witch, one of a beautiful enchantress and the other of an old hag. I found it interesting how the depiction of the body changed depending on context and yet still managed to retain the original idea, and thus I was compelled to produce a body of work that would allow me to create my own version of the witch by building on what had been produced in the past.
The witch embodied the anti-maternal which can be seen in works like The Witches’ Sabbath by Goya, where babies and corpses appear to be held for the devil for sacrifice purposes.
During the pre-modern it was considered a woman’s life purpose to have children, and those who failed were almost inverting the set gender roles. Women’s sexual freedom was monitored; by criticising the old, withering body of a woman, motherhood was glorified, re-affirming the set social values. Similarly, by portraying the witch as unearthly beautiful, its suggested that the beauty must be rooted with the devil.