Pleasing memory picture

2016-2017

On This Day (2016), GIF / Infinite Loop

The photographic image serves as a mechanism of representation, which has historically been used for binding the human body to the world. How, then, does that representation and subsequent binding become complicated or disrupted through the violent act of manipulating one’s representation by technological means? Relying on the algorithmic software of Photoshop, I’ve been exploring this idea of erasing or rewriting my personal history - which has involved a systematic use of the Content Aware Fill function and an almost obsessive-compulsive impulse to erase every trace of my representation from the photographs in my personal archive.

These images are part of an ongoing body of work and largely represent a continued narrative throughout my practice that explores the complex relationships between photography, death, selfhood, and memory. A brief note on the title of this work: a few years ago I interviewed a mortician named Sam (see: The Last Sleep), and he told me that in mortuary school his teachers stressed the importance of what they called the “pleasing memory picture” - the last photo of someone you use to remember them by.

Playback. Digital Video, 12:24, 2017

The full body of work can be found at pleasingmemorypicture.com.