The Decay of Memory

Memory fades, loses details, becomes less distinct and immediate. We feel it slip away, experience the longings, pains and pleasures of nostalgia, the comforts of time in healing our psychic wounds, the constant process and experience of moving forward and seeing our former selves recede into the past, Memory is changeable, contaminated by the stories we tell, degraded and infected, and then recombined in to something new, with new uses and purposes. 

It was a couple decades ago when I had a studio next to a river. While I was traveling there was a large flood, large enough so it made the national news and I could watch the videos of the area my studio was located in being inundated. It was a month before I could get back to a molding mess. I lost most of my work up until that time, but, in a lucky occurrence there were several folders of slides that had been half submerged for a short while and that still had some images partially intact.

I was fascinated by these damaged images. They seemed like such a good analogy for memory and the re-inventions that we are forced into whenever we're excavating the past. Since that time I've continued to experiment with ways of causing, and working with, the decay of the photos I take. It's primarily a subtractive process - the removal of parts of the image, but the process also results in additions, to varying degrees.




Progression of Decay







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