for the open studios last sunday, had an idea itch that needed to be scratched – so rushed off to the sunday only flea market at mauer park first thing – early enough to find what i needed, get back to the residency, make my wall piece/installation and shower before the opening at 3pm. managed to pull it off, even though my original idea morphed into something much more interesting based on what i could find at the flea market.
there is a stall that sells old photo albums – probably picked up at estate sales – an intimate view into strangers lives – posing here and there, with loved ones, in front of monuments and such. but the photos that gripped me most were 2 albums i found from the early war years – 1938-1942. people living, loving, getting on with their lives in the midst of a terrible history. i made an installation of the photos – some typical family shots, others quirky and strange – each image drawing me deeper into questioning – wondering what their place was in the scheme of things: the little girl holding her doll, the family group portrait with young soldier in nazi armband, a couple on their wedding day.
i usually avoid political, historical or current events in my work, choosing instead to look for the universal, the mythical. but this immediate past was too compelling to pass up, and the richness of stories that may be lost are now written visually in my corner wall piece. being here in east berlin, it is impossible to not be reminded of what went before, and to wonder at the profound metamorphosis in such a short period of time.