Victoria and Albert Museum

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The Loss of Storytelling

The Loss of Storytelling

These images are the final outcomes of a body of work which confronts my German heritage and investigates the ways in which the past is filtered, distorted and suppressed. This work began as a confrontation with my Grandmother’s photographs. Her numerous photo albums detail so many events in her life, and yet in the period surrounding the war, there is a sense that something is missing. Some photos have been taken out of albums. Most of them are neatly described and dated, but suddenly an undecipherable letter next to an image of an unidentified high ranking German official appears. Photographs of sport camps follow, holidays, her life as a teacher. And then photographs of the empty Nuremberg stadium, with no explanation for her being there, just a date. My process involved a continual re-interpretation of the image, and thereby of the memory contained in it, by re-photographing, drawing, re-drawing, cutting, moving, re-grouping. During this process, the line between imagination and reality has become blurred, and my working method becomes a mirror for the distortion of memory. More images can be found here: