Photography is utilized to eternalize moments, granting them the ability to withstand time. We hold these memories in a sacred place, protecting them from the influence of the external world. The downfall of preserving memory is that it prevents us from moving forward in time, forbidding us to create new memories. The ephemeral way of life inspires me to create images; the problem with still imagery is that it doesn’t tell the whole truth of the moment, only a fragment. These moments are more than just one click of a button; they can sometimes span the course of a whole year. Time is a construct created by humans to help us keep track of the sacred moments in our past, present and future.
I began to explore this idea of time as being sacred in the summer of 2016, in the place it all began: Gray Skull Island. A small river island owned by my family and a place I spent a lot of time as a child with my grandfather. He taught me that time is precious and that we will never get these moments back so it’s important to appreciate life and the time you have to share with the people that you love. When I feel nostalgic it’s these places that I long for, my grandfather’s river island, the river that I spent my summers as a young adult, the pool that I shared a really intimate moment with a former lover—the idea of home. Time can be cruel, casting aside a moment in an instant just to move on to the next one. I began to think about how to prevent time from changing my memories, to further the idea of nostalgia. I would perform rituals at these places to allow me to meditate and just be present in the moment, rather than focusing behind a viewfinder the entire time. I began working with branches, weaving them to create a sacred space, the idea of a circle in pagan rituals is to cast out evil, to protect what is in the center.
We have a sacred relationship with many different things: memories, our spirit, the earth, and life itself. A photograph is a moment in time that no longer exists, much like the idea of nostalgia. When we feel nostalgic we have a sense of longing for a home that was never real, a moment in time that we think is how we remember it, but in fact we may be remembering it wrong. Furthermore, the question of real versus fictitious moments comes to question in my work. Is anything I am showing you real—or perhaps it is just a figment of my imagination, a confabulation of a moment that never existed.
I chose to display my videos in these circles made out of branches and adorned them with nostalgic objects. I used very specific objects from my past, a bouquet of flower my current lover brought me on our first date. And sand dollars I collected on the central coast with a former lover. Not only are these objects important to me, they are also common objects that people collect to help create beautiful memories. The photographs have been displayed in a shrine like structure, to allow the audience to see them as sacred images. I did this to protect my memories, to preserve them as I remember them, to prevent them from being swept up in the tides of time.
(The Documentation of the work in the gallery will happen around April).