Odette England, ‘Excavation No. 6’, 2015, KLOMPCHING GALLERY

14.5"x14.3" image on 18.5"x18.3" sheet.
Unique photograph hand-sanded with sandpaper.
Canson Photo Rag

"Preserving family history via photography is like an archeological excavation: it involves the exposure, processing and recording of remains. But to uncover the truth – or at least an interpretation of the ‘apparent truth’ of an image – a ‘hunt’ or ‘dig’ is required.

My project 'Excavations' explores the invisible social space of family storytelling. I make chromogenic color prints (in the darkroom) of family photographs using vintage Kodak film, as well as using snapshots from the album, and then carefully hand-sand them with various types and grades of sandpaper. Using sandpaper means I can blur detail, smooth areas, roughen up patches, and remove people or landscapes altogether…in other words, grind and polish my past, present, future. I make the importance of the snapshot as a memory-based object more beguiling. New stories emerge through interaction, transforming presence into symbolic absence.

The new images challenge how past events are re-presented to us through imagery and how these can influence what we think and believe."–Odette England

Series: Excavations

Signature: Signed, Titled, Dated via label.

Image rights: Odette England

Direct from the artist.

About Odette England