Photo Essay: Stephen Mead

PHOTO ESSAY

STEPHEN MEAD

Our Spirit Life

 

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Our Spirit Life– Talking About the Story: Stephen Mead

These images from a series in progress, “Our Spirit Life”, are photomontages which had a long hibernation period. My mom passed away in January 2002, and then in 2012 in the same month, in the same hospital unit, my father passed away. Both times boxes of family photos came into my possession. Over the years, I’d written poems and done tribute pieces of art for my parents, but I’d been intending to do something with these inherited photos in particular. Going through them again as I prepared a slideshow for dad’s Wake, lines of a Laurie Anderson song kept coming to mind: “when my father died it was like a whole library burned to the ground.” Indeed, knowing how much of my insular upbringing has vanished I created these montages as a memento mori for the life which was, yet also as an acknowledgement of how much it is encapsulated as a living story within me. The is part of these montages comes both from sky footage I took and used both for Dad’s film and as ‘stills’ to mix with images from the past, as well as my own photos of the rural surroundings our lives shared.

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A resident of New York, Stephen Mead is a published artist, writer, and maker of short collage-films. Much can be learned of his multi-media work by placing his name in any search engine.