I have always loved the body of work, Post Partum Document by conceptual artist Mary Kelly.
This work documents the first 4 years of her sons life, not by photographs but from evidence and meticulous records of his existence.
In a press release about this complex body of work this was written:
In the "Introduction," Kelly ... presents the work's main motif - intersubjectivity - which she has drawn on four baby vests, using one of Lacan's early diagrams. The subsequent sections document the development of the child up to age five and analyze the reciprocity of the process of socialization of mother and child. The vests, dirty diapers, traces of markings and writing, hand imprints, and insect specimens stand for the mother’s memorabilia and how she makes sense of separation from the child. The artist has added diary-like notes and quasi-scientific data to these private objects so that subjective references are juxtaposed with the more distanced or theoretical approaches represented by the diagrams.
In her critical engagement with psychoanalysis and feminism as well as her provocative stance vis-a-vis conceptualism, Mary Kelly has succeeded in creating a multi-faceted artwork documenting one of modernism's central and most symptomatic blind spots: the woman as artist and mother. Her seven-year process of reflection and visualization has meanwhile assumed a unique place within art history.
Analysed Faecal Stains and Feeding Charts
Though the work may seem somewhat clerical and sterile. The devotion and meticulousness of the work seems to be a form of evidence towards the complex love between mother and child.