santas and sailors 2006

I have recently been working on collaboration with my mother and her collection of the figure ‘Santa’, whether it is Saint Nicholas, Uncle Sam or just a true Santa figurine. When creating these images I also used a collection of her fabrics for the background, making a seamless backdrop for each figure to stand on. The curve of the fabric the flatness that it creates plays with the idea of the surface of the photograph as the image. Each object appears to be floating and many are camouflaged into the backgrounds, flattening the image even more. I feel that this creates a psychologically controlled space within each photograph, a mini-world for each figurine to exist in.

In comparison, I am working with Merchant Marine Veterans who volunteer their time to preserve and run the WWII ship, the Lane Victory. My grandfather believes in the veterans and their need for maintaining this past and is part of the crew and member of the U.S. Merchant Marine Veterans of World War II. Unlike my mother, he participates in the importance of these collections as a preserver, not a collector himself. These men hold onto a similar obsession with their commitment to preservation of objects such as the Lane Victory itself and other personally important memorabilia. The sense of comfort and claustrophobia appears in the space of The Port of Los Angeles. It feels like I am returning home, with all of my mother’s collections looming and surrounding – changing the landscape of a traditional house with obstacles and limitations. The Port is my mother’s house on a larger scale; I see the containers as toy blocks to play with, a collection of color and shape to visually build beautiful formations for the viewer. I want to explore the relationship between these ideas, the idea of preservation and collections, and the physical and psychological space captured in a photograph.