MY MAY YOUR MAY | ‘…the shadows of reality, so to speak, emerge out of nothing on the exposed paper, as memories do in the middle of the night...’ - W.G. Sebald
The work addresses the relationship between photography and memory like a pair of untrustworthy twins. Reflecting on past events in Zurich and Athens encountered by two individuals, (who now live together as a couple in London), the individuals return to reclaim fragments of memories - four years removed from critical experiences, which took place simultaneously in May 2014. Collectively, a new narrative is born, as the reality of actual events blur and transform with the passing of time.
The series’ contact sheet, is traditionally a working-tool for photographers to glimpse what they have captured on a roll of film. The sheet helps to situate a single image within a wider context. But this contact sheet is not to be trusted. Freud suggests that recollections of past events are distilled by what we want, or perhaps need to remember. Indeed, consciously or not, we are not passive viewers of our experiences. Freud's notion is visualised with prints of enlarged details extracted from the contact sheet, which can be considered significant and traumatic 'fragments of memory'. For every year passed from the actual events that took place, another fragment has been produced by making a contact print from the preceding print. This results in a chain of distortion – perhaps a more truthful representation than the original photograph or projected memory, highlighting photography's limitation to show 'the complete picture' and memory's subjective and non-fixed nature.
The work is made solely with analogue techniques in a black and white darkroom. As unique objects, the 20''x24'' prints embody durations of time and processes, representative of the memories reflected on and examined by the protagonists. www.adamrazvi.com