The series of photo-based works titled Ancestors are sourced from my family’s archives that includes four generations of funeral photos. I have utilized these images as a departure point to create a series of images that references photography’s historical tradition with documenting death while metaphorically speaking about communal and personal loss. The images integrate constructed landscapes that I have photographed with component parts from my family archives. The moon is a recurring element within these images. The moon has mythological associations with death throughout cultures and I believe is an appropriate referent to speak on this subject.
Ancestors is part of a larger body of work called The Space Between Grief and Morning. It is an interdisciplanary series of works that metaphorically explores the process of grief and mourning in private and public contexts. In 2014, I lost my father. I had been his primary care-giver for over ten years, having moved him and my mother to live with me in Houston. During this time, I had taken care of every aspect of my father’s daily needs while witnessing the slow process of aging, disease, and its effects on the body. This body of work aims to take this very personal experience of loss and translate it to a larger audience by exploring grief and mourning in its various forms.