Back to Weathered Chromes

Artist Statement

Recently, while cleaning out my archive, I found a handful of slides damaged by heat and moisture from storage. The images appeared melted from six decades of time; cracks and crazes cut across otherwise plain pictures of my family and home. Peeking through the surreal, swirling patterns were recognizable figures: my son Robb, a swingset, and the trees around my home. I instantly loved the look of these slides—the damage evoked time and memory in a surreal way.

I immediately set out to recreate these damaged images using excess slides from my archive. I piled up hundreds of unwanted slides taken around the world and at home, and I left them out on my deck for nature to alter. After a few weeks in the elements, the slides took on a completely new look. Water, heat, and time washed out their emulsion thus creating rivers, cobwebs, and bullseyes on the original images. Colors combined together in swirling, psychedelic patterns to create painterly photographs. For these new images, the figures vanish and leave only small clues of their original subject matter. Nature created this new reality.

This deconstructive act turned the straight photographs into unusual, dreamlike images like the ones I had found. Many of these images retained their original figurative qualities; however, several turned abstract. For some, traces of the original peek through and reveal the truth of the original image. Bits of seventies fashion, the boot of a horse rider, the Taj Mahal, and other just-recognizable remnants uncover the origins of these abstractions. The finished photographs tell a story of time, place, and the delicate nature of the source material.