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Jenny Fine

Artist Statement Submitted 2019

I create images and environments inspired by my rural southern upbringing and my family’s stories. Through my photography, the family farm and our home’s interiors become a stage where our costumed bodies perform ourselves. The camera crops, flattens space, freezes time, and silences indications of life – so then, is the photograph a kind of death? What does it mean, then, to regenerate an image or wear it as a costume? My work is grounded in early (Victorian) sentiment around the photograph – when it was better to have an image of your dead child than no image at all. This is the starting point for the ‘stand-in’, the photograph as both presence and absence. My current work approaches photography in this context to explore our relationship to history. Photographs, performances, and installations overlap past and present to investigate place, the persistence of time, and the complex identity of my American South.

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