Mixed States

Mixed States

Mixed States is a new multimedia project, and a work in progress. Recent access to archival family photographs has enabled me to construct a body of work that explores themes of loss and identity within the context of memory shaped by fluid external constructs.

Background:  Some years ago, upon completion of a self-portrait in oils, I was startled to realize that the painting very much resembled my father who had died in a car accident in 1963. I titled the work, My Father, Myself. In 2013 I was reunited with my father’s family, who had all migrated to the Detroit/Windsor area some time in the late 60s. I subsequently moved to Windsor in 2014. One of my uncles gave me a photograph of my father that I had never seen before, and which he had kept in his wallet for decades. I scanned it thinking I might attempt to restore it.

Meanwhile, I had begun salvaging and working on old photographs while purging and cleaning out my computer. The keepers go into an album called the Lost Files. Below is a more creative example, which was the catalyst that lead to the Mixed States project.

New Metaphor

By merging my face with my father’s, I was able to produce a truly remarkable collection. (The next stage will be to create similar collections, but with combinations of other family members.)

Credits: The original photograph of me is a self-portrait (2004) using a tripod and self-timer. Details for the photograph of my father have been lost (ca. 1954).

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