I awoke to the sound of voices, a fractious encounter taking place in the hallway. For a while, I stood by the bedroom door, trying to listen to the argument that ensued. I opened the door and walked down the very long, family picture wall of fame to the quarrel taking place at the front door. My grandparents stood at the doorway with my father standing outside. My nan tried to usure me back into the bedroom but I wanted to know why everyone was shouting and why my dad seemed to be leaving. After all, I very rarely saw him and he was my idol.
It was August, I remember because my dad and I had been shopping that day for my nanna’s present. A necklace, that later when she had died, I retrieved from her jewelry box and keep to this day.
He held my tear sodden face, or so ‘I think’ I remember and assured me that he was simply going out for the evening and would be there when I woke up. I returned to bed uneasy at this turbulent encounter but safe in the knowledge that it was temporary. Kevin never returned and I never saw him again, I was eight years old.
This memory, is a conflation of both a fixed and fleeting moment. As I imagine it, try to grasp it, it is gone, fragmented, out of time, yet in the same instance serves as my most visceral reimagining of events that I can recall. I say ‘reimaging’ as every time I recall this moment, it is different.
These images give physical form to my childhood memories and follow my journey through these familar landscapes in an attempt to find resolution, answers and closure. These landscapes however and the act of photographing them seem to elude these questions and the images are constructed to create a viel which invites the viewer for contemplation while also prohibiting them from accessing information. The work considers heritage and identity through the temporality of place and memory and pieces together a fractured and incomplete narrative.
Since embarking on this work two years ago, I have since found my biological father who has decided that he does not want to be in contact with me. Romanced nostalgia transends into reality and the answers that I was seeking have been revealed. However, the longing for the forgotten time or a reconciliation still weave through the current fabric and evoke the desire to explore further into how our parents imbue a sense of belonging.