Today I release my latest body of work. I feel many things at the moment, mostly emotions linked to seeing a year’s worth of labour coming to fruition. I am particularly proud of Blood Line. So are my daughters. Working on it together was a shared pleasure, also because we felt connected to my Dad when we did. Right now however I do experience a little tightening of the chest (or is it of the throat?) as the grief is still fresh. But I remind myself that when he saw the photographs a few weeks before his death, he loved them. I wish he were here. I think he would have been proud too.
Blood Line – Artist Statement
Once your parents pass away, you realise you’re next in line. My father was diagnosed with terminal cancer at the tender age of 64. In “Blood Line” I investigate how his inescapable disease and his death also affected my own life. I saw my father’s pain and felt my own. My subjects are my daughters, my flesh and blood, his descendants. He experienced, I processed, they embody.
With this work I address how terminal illness turns our lives upside down and affects communication and identity. When I was with my dad, he and I knew his days were numbered. I was able to say things I might not have shared before, but I also found myself withholding private thoughts. My version of reality and truth shifted. Blood Line illustrates the ensuing coding of language and our morphing sense of Self.
Life as I knew it was radically redefined and my personal definition of a photograph evolved. In much of the work, I altered the surface of my pigment ink prints with the medical supplies that overtook our lives, such as gauze, suture thread, eosin…, even my own blood that I drew from my fingers. I cut the prints with scalpels and tore them by hand. By lineage, I am the literal link between my father and my daughters. Now I am also that link through the work of my hands. A year later, he is gone, and when I am too, the photographs will still be there to connect us all.
Blood Line is a limited edition of 6+2AP.
All photographs below are photographs of the actual prints.