Elina Brotherus (b. 1972 Helsinki, Finland) works with photography and video. In her early works, she focused on subjective experiences, the presence and absence of love. She then moved on to more formal issues in her series 'The New Painting'. Her other pieces of work are centered on the relation of the human figure and landscape, as well as the gaze of an artist in relation to his/her model, and more recently on the experience of infertility. Brotherus lives and works in Finland and in France.
Annonciation is a series of photographs in which Elina Brotherus records herself through years of failed IVF treatments. Full of art historical references, Brotherus' images stand in sharp contrast to the traditional scenes and symbolism of Annonciation paintings. While the Virgin Mary receives the news that she is to give birth to the son of God, Brotherus pictures herself month after month in-front of a succession of negative pregnancy tests. Feelings of elation and abundance are replaced with those of sorrow and loss. Brotherus' photographs question the term 'mother', suggesting that it can stem from intention rather than being bound to biology or the physical act of having a child.