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Charles Clary
South Carolina

Artist Statement Submitted 2020

My work stems from the loss of both my mother and father due to smoking related cancers in February of 2013. Their passing left a deep void in my life that led to my interest in Memento Mori, remembering that one day you will die, and a reinvestigation of my own childhood trauma, abuse, and mortality. Through these investigations I came to terms with the trauma of my childhood and the lack of memories I actually have.

Picture frames are usually reserved for those most cherished of memories: a family
outing, birthdays, weddings, or holiday get-togethers. They rarely encapsulate the most influential events: a death in the family, trauma, or abuse. My work seeks to investigate these moments as they force us to make decisions, decisions that lead to life changing events. We either rise to the occasion or sink into despair. Pulling from the ideation of mourning jewelry, hair wreaths, and Victorian sitting rooms, my work mimics and encapsulates trauma within the fragility of paper.

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