PASSAGES: RELIVING THE PERCEPTION OF OUR PAST
Passages is rooted in the perception of then and the reality of now; how we remember our childhood as an adult and then reliving it and seeing the reality of it. These images appear more as dreamscapes, with that hazy feeling of how you remember moments from your past in muted tones. As a kid, my father would take my brother and me to the prairies to visit to connect with his side of the family. Last year we made the same journey, under more difficult circumstances, and what resonated with me was the nostalgia of seeing the road from the back window of the car as a kid and how the landscape relates and connected to my life at that moment 25 years later.
Passages started as a photography series as at the time I was working on a body of photography work called In the Valley, while living at the northern tip of the Sonora Desert in Canada. From here a three-hour drive west would land you in a rainforest on the ocean, and three hours east would put you in the high mountain range of the Rockies. While it’s an area that is popularly photographed, there is little imagery showing beauty in the harshness of the valley landscape after the damage and erosion of the elements like wildfire, flooding and abandonment.
Spending time in my surroundings and documenting it, is a calming connection for me. After reviewing the photos from Passages, I wanted to strip down and pull out the most defining aspects each landscape by modifying it to its simplest form, while maintaining the impact of reference and maintaining the feel of nature through composition and colour choice. What emerged is a series of paintings that convey the feeling of the changing landscapes of Western Canada.
When I consider collections or bodies of work, I am drawn to words with double meanings where both definitions relate to the concepts I’m working through. Passages is about returning to these familiar landscapes physically, but it also paralleled the passage of working through some intense emotions of grief and letting go and having the space to pass through it.