30 September 2019
Click onto image to enlarge. Let me know your response to this photomontage. Prints are available upon request.
Memory is an evergreen phenomenon. Even yesterday’s experiences can rarely be recalled with precise accuracy. Bending a thought is more attuned to what the mind preserves. Still, the essence can be found, and its emotional gifts can be felt and stored.
Frequently, I ponder memory’s role in life: how it easily can manipulate how we act, how we behave, how it shapes us. Even the smallest of experiences needs hard work to recreate its fullest meaning.
This past week I decided to take a stroll in my wildflower meadow and explore more than its benefits. I was struck with thoughts of construction, destruction and reconstruction, because each flower head has vast elements—elements that spur eye-catching investigation and lengthy after thoughts.
Take one single cosmos and pluck a petal; it has dimensions that are worthy of examination: scalloped edges, fine lines of various colors at its base, and saturated hues that stun. Just one petal can induce deeply heartfelt awe and wonder.
And so the idea that a meadow is packed with such pleasures has me tinkering at each phase of a species’ evolution. Wildflowers are mirrors into the convergence and divergence of the universe’s playgrounds. And since I act as a year-round steward, they provide memories to savor over and over.
Photography provides memory. It gives us enough information to sense our original reaction and be able to store others. As I frame a subject, light changes visual perception, color influences, form and lines echo comparisons; all become part of the memory’s syncopation.
Long ago I decided that part of my adventure in nature would become more than an immediate reaction. As I gathered flower heads, I became more and more steeped in the deconstruction of the whole into its parts. I’d create a sculpture from flowers that already are sculptures; art birthing more art.
The gathering was in itself filled with unexpected discoveries that the mind slowed its cadence during that process. As I filled a small square container, it became the vessel for remembrance, a vessel for rainbows of florets, a vessel to inspire creativity, a vessel for memories.
Methodically, I made the arrangement, flat and on a white board. As humans we continually deconstruct natural habits, leaving bare and lifeless behind.
Sometimes the harvesting of the natural world is more than the sum of its intentions. The harvesting becomes symbolic of human dependence and human interference. In the Lens section I wanted to show my imagined deconstruction of the flowers, the up close and personal effects of how (symbolically) we construct, destruct and reconstruct our environments.