Berlin: Former Guard Tower Off Puschkinallee

Berlin: Former Guard Tower Off Puschkinallee

This image is from a series of hand-sewn photographs.

I am interested in the failures of photography in preserving experience and personal history, as well as the means by which photographs transform history into nostalgic objects that obscure understandings of the past.

In these works, sections of the photographs have been obscured by cross-stitch embroidery sewn directly into the photograph. The embroidery deteriorates the original photograph and forms a pixelated version of the underlying image. As large areas of the photographs are concealed by the embroidery, small, seemingly trivial details emerge, while the larger picture and context are erased.

The images were taken in the city center as well as in the suburbs, where I followed the former path of the Berlin wall. I was particularly interested in photographing locations where no visible traces of the actual wall remain, but there are subtle clues of its previous existence. These clues include incongruities in the architecture that occurred as new structures were built on newly opened land parcels, changes in streetlights, or newer vegetation. In addition to the physical aspects that point to the former division of the city, I was interested in the psychological weight of these sites and the ways in which past history remains very much in the present.

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