TO BE FORGOTTEN
Throughout my life, I have been forced to view memory through the eyes of my loved ones. As a kindergarten student, I saw my great-grandma, grandma Gigi lose herself when she had a stroke only days before we had to say goodbye. I recently struggled to watch my grandma Marga struggle with Alzheimer’s for years before she passed. I began to understand what it felt like to be forgotten. In my research, I dove into how memories work, and how our brain decides what it needs to remember for survival and what is only filling needed space.
I created a series of two paintings to represent beings fading away. I chose to paint my siblings, who have made me who I am today. Who I never want to forget me or me to forget them. When researching Alzheimer’s, I learned that a patient’s memory is slowly lost. I chose to paint the simple portraits in black and white to show one aspect of them is already gone. I decided to spray the paintings with frosted glass, to showcase them further being lost to the mind. This medium was very unpredictable and different for each portrait. Memory is still a mystery to us, and forgetting is different for everyone. No portrait is the same.
The layer of the new material is cracking and pooling in different ways. In each portrait, specific aspects of the person are more apparent than the rest. As one forgets, small pieces can still be found deep in their brain. The fog of the layer showing one may be faded, not entirely themselves, but always remembered. Until eventually, the fog takes over.