December 2022

I respond to the way photographs transform mundane objects into open-ended, highly personal metaphors. These pictures of banal objects are strangely magnetic to our projections, even as their subjects stay anchored in the every-day and remain stubbornly themselves. Photographs both hold and reveal seamlessly mashed-up ambiguous thoughts, tentative ideas, and fleeting associations, provoking the viewer to seek resolution. This participation is always fresh as viewers bring their ever-changing concerns.

Taking photos is largely an intuitive action: certain objects seen through the viewfinder feel familiar - there is a kind of recognition, perhaps of something dimly remembered. Sequencing images, however, is a more conscious participation with the images. When I order these carefully chosen photos, I wonder how the created narrative echoes through the viewer’s experience of the work. Are my images simply a framework, a focus for another’s projected psyche to flesh out as needed, or something completely new? Or is it that the audience’s created meaning undergoes a kind of alchemy, mixing with the residue of my own intended story? The result can then be a layered, ambiguous fable floating in an unnamed third space.

The title is a suggestion that the world we photograph is malleable, each of us using images to create meaning moment by moment, as needed. It is also linked to William Eggleston’s “Democratic Forest,” suggesting a different understanding of his “democracy of vision.”

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