During the lockdown of march and April, I found myself angry at the situation and frustrated as the project that I had been fantasised about since the beginning of this year, the work could not be realised as the school was close. I decided to go back to more manual work and started to do some more embroidery. Going around the house to find some material I could use to experiment with I found some old concrete which I had for 3 years now but never used. I started experimenting with it and with the embroidery: I first prepare some concrete and they gently put it on top of a balloon once the concrete is ready I put on top the embroidery done on and dissolvable fabric and gently rub the thread into the concrete so it stays fix and then rubs the dissolvable fabric with water. The problem is to be able to remove the fabric without too much water otherwise the concrete doesn’t stay on and the image just looses its original shape and becomes a ball of thread.
For each family, the memory is embedded to a bigger historical angle that can be psychologic and sociologic which would make the link between the small and the bigger collective memory. Since the beginning of this year, I have focused my research on these archives, the need that one has to document the private: the transition between the oral and the visual memory with the apparition of photography and film, the selection and staging of happy memories. The other part of my research was about how one individual can interact with those ‘forced’ memories and the fact that most memories are not accurate. So when I first started this project I played with the images and figures from my family photo collection through embroidery which for me is a part of the women’s skills of the family. Playing with this stereotype I chose to fix these blurry memories and figure. By petrifying these memories, I am creating the myth of the official family memory.
I was particularly interested in the combination of embroidery and concrete which I had never seen before. The contrast between the solid concrete and the delicate embroidery was perfect. I had a lot of feedback about the concrete sculpture and most people found that they look like fossils. The idea of digging up and found object perfectly match the idea of memory to me. The idea that you find a photograph knowing or not what or who it represents it imagines the life of the people of the photograph resonates with the archeologic idea of the fossil and discovering these strange objects and trying to figure out what and who they represent and what is the story behind these objects.