Artistic interconnectedness among artists is somewhat commonplace. After all, the nature of creation is largely based on borrowing, recontextualizing, or even directly appropriating ideas and motifs from other practitioners. We all engage in it, whether consciously or subconsciously. So, the other day when I saw Peter Riesett's series Testament.08, I was eerily struck by the similarities it shares with my current body of work, The Family Dig. As his statement so simply and eloquently asserts:
"These images are an extension of a photographic series completed in 2004, entitled TESTAMENT. This was my second grandfather to have passed away and the second time I was documenting the packing up of a life after death. The difference here, his wife is still alive -- a poignant presence mourning the loss of her husband of 60 years. After one grandfather's passing in 2003 and my other in 2007, I routinely returned to these spaces to capture what I could before these dwellings disappeared. Much like an archeological dig, souvenirs, texts, and objects filled the space, allowing me to have wordless conversations with the objects of disuse. With every visit the void and absence of life became greater within these walls. Through the wandering process of investigation, compositions were revealed, often transcending into metaphor.
Personality traits become unveiled by how and what is accumulated, stockpiled, and often cherished. These attachments and idiosyncrasies, portrayed through the collision, placement, and relationship of everyday objects intrigue me. The action of photography becomes a way to integrate myself into any given situation. Using an unflinching documentary approach and working with available light, I strive to engage viewers in a dialogue that is both physical and emotional. This is a call to witness."
All photographs from the series Testament.08
All Images © Peter Riesett