The Birth of...
Each image in The Birth of… series implies possible conceptions of the word that comes next in the title—confidence, patience, reincarnation, opportunity. And with each instantiation of the idea comes the option to accept the photographic reality or to deconstruct it. The Birth of Inertia I readily supposes a girl on a bicycle, the left photo in the diptych pitting her against the wind, the right hand photo gently sweeping her along. A closer examination shows that the strong wind that blows her hair forward or back appears to have no affect on the surrounding grass or trees. In fact, there is no motion elsewhere at all. The bike is at a standstill, inert. The manual enhancement of the subject’s hair (a wig), foils the inertia elsewhere and hints at subtext.

Again, in The Birth of Inertia II, the woman ascends and descends a set of stairs alongside a bridge, her long hair suggesting a farcical gust. The setting itself is a contradiction, until the subtly of a vertical image flip from one to the next reveals itself. The vertical flip and the contradiction of motion are visual links—allegories that Geenen surreptitiously layers on the work. The act of ascension, against the wind, is to question reality as it is handed to us; suggestion, on the other hand, is the wind at your back. The image wants to sweep you away; your intellect fights the desire.

The Birth of Reincarnation perfectly pulls together Geenen's subtlety and mastery of purposeful construction. A pair of storks soar over a graveyard, archetypes of death and birth combining in spectral fashion. One stork’s wing stroke is the inverse of the other; one pushes, the other pulls. The mirror flip is too perfect to not raise suspicion. Yet Geenen’s touch of artifice always skirts interference, and by his hand the image and its meanings come into full relief.