from girlhood to womanhood, chloe sheppard comes of age with a nostalgic exhibition

The night before her 21st birthday, the British photographer and chronicler of all things girl looks back at the work that defined her youth.

by Tish Weinstock
24 May 2017, 7:50am

Photographer Chloe Sheppard is turning 21 this Saturday, and to celebrate she's staging an exhibition that looks nostalgically back to the past, which is, to say, that on the cusp of adulthood, Chloe looks back to her youth. Launching at east London's Republic Gallery, I Never Promised You a Rose Garden is an exhibition of photos and collages that span over the last two years of Chloe's life. Inspired by bygone eras and artist, and her own romanticised notion of what it means to be young, her work offers an intimate portrayal of girlhood and youth, so much so, that one wall of the exhibition will be decorated with pictures, postcards and record sleeves, just like it is at home. 

"My work was more of an exploration of fantasy ideas around youth," Chloe tells i-D, "it's always been how I wish my youth would have been -- how I'd have looked or who'd I'd have constantly liked to have been surrounded by. Now I'm older, I feel more like I'm sure of who I am, and where I want to be. I don't feel the need to constantly photograph younger people anymore who I wish I could relate to. Turning 21 has made me feel more mature about certain things, and with my work I want to create more that focuses on real issues and bring more representation of many more things." 

Ahead of the exhibition, we take a sneak peek into the girlish dreamworld of Chloe Sheppard.

I Never Promised You a Rose Garden is showing at East London's Republic Gallery from 26 - 28 May

Drinks on opening night kindly being supplied by Diageo

Read: Photographer Chloe Sheppard and the power of the female gaze.


Text Tish Weinstock
Photography Chloe Sheppard

Female Gaze
london exhibitions
chloe sheppard
i never promised you a rose garden
republic gallery