Sunday, March 25, 2012

the domestic lives of others - aprons

See and Sew 4838 B

"If I hadn't met your mother I would have stayed in the Navy."  

The first apron in this series was inspired by my dad, it is made from paper; prints of scanned photographs sewn by machine.  The apron is 36" high and 15" wide when folded into its "wearable shape," in other words it would fit me.  Various ways of cutting and re-pairing parts of a snapshot of my father have been reconfigured and incorporated with a second color image of my parents, before their marriage.

I continue to explore the possibilities of the family snapshot archive with all of its visual and metaphorical offerings.

The second apron shown below 21" x 18" folded, was made in response to the apron about my father.  It displays photos of my mother from her first communion juxtaposed with one from her wedding day.

See and Sew 4838 A

Alongside an interest in how families document their lives and the resulting archive, I am also engaged with the idea of how the snapshot affects autobiographical memory.  Memory research has proven that despite the commonly held myth that all experiences are preserved intact (and that with an appropriate stimulus will be recalled in their entirety), the memory is influenced and transformed by time.  This work is not exactly about memory.  It is more about the process of not forgetting.  The life experiences I am interested in are not my own, they predate my existence.  They are not my memories, nor do they qualify as post memories as they are not even my parent's memories.  The work is about imaging who my parents where before they knew each other.

The making of these aprons has been an intimate kinesthetic experience. My goal is to produce many, many, many aprons over the next month and not think too much about them.  If I stop now to think about the social political significance to these objects I might loose the creative energy that is motivating their creation.