The following article is by T.J. McNamara, and appeared in The New Zealand Herald.
Art: Photographs cover all the angles
By T.J. McNamara
A very special world is evoked by 15 colour photographs of naked, pregnant women by Emma Bass at the Chiaroscuro Gallery. Many of the photographs are superb, but this world of pregnancy and childbirth is treated so frankly that it might well cause dismay and unease. These courageous photographs do not exclude vomit, poo and varicose veins from the world of naked Eve.
Yet the solid realism is countered by the way the frank works are interspersed with poetic works where the shape of the gravid woman is filled with colourful flowers or fauna.
Some images make a very strong point: that all women, however celebrated, are subject to the same processes in childbearing is conveyed by a woman with a wig and a mask of makeup that makes her Madonna.
Some of the works try too hard, but nevertheless, this is a vivid show that mixes joy, mystery and the sheer awkwardness of bearing a child.