then he forgot my name
a work-in-progress, self-portrait, photography series exploring decay, mortality, vulnerability, fear and womanhood; shrouded in current american, political, tumult and the collective, awakening of female power/equality.
several years ago my father was diagnosed with dementia, prompting frequent visits to our family home. during one of the visits, my brother reintroduces a building he bought 20 years ago in downtown youngstown, ohio that remains untouched and lost in time. the decay and deterioration is visually stunning and yearn with potential to reflect the experience of a middle-aged woman with aging parents, and all that implies. the history of the building is ripe for culling story and character.
approaching work from the personal, and finding paths to truth by elevating it to the universal through myth, archetype, and character; womanhood is the obvious starting point. then he forgot my name, takes the inner thoughts of women imaged, who lived or worked in the building through history gleaned from: researching past tenants, found objects on set, as well as, personal experiences. the universality of womanhood—the trials, wounds, strengths, tolerances, impossible tasks—give the vantage point to start. thankful for the current national conversation on power, sex, men and women, it is perhaps the first time in modern history that women’s experiential perspective is at the table.
what began as a project about my father evolves into what it is like to be a woman, with a look back at our history and tying it to the conversation of today, the #metoo movement, as we move forward. the title, then he forgot my name, takes on a new interpretation—and the denial echoing from some of the perpetrators rings harshly and loudly: “i don’t even remember her.”
poring over the work mid-year, another pattern surfaces, that of the red, white and blue color theme. my subconscious pushes forward through the challenging results of the 2016 presidential election. fear is bleeding into my work, and i am suddenly cognizant of the vulnerability of democracy—for what may be the first time in my lifetime—and connecting it with decay, both as a country and in the imagery. Showing 5 of 27 images.