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Jonathan Brooks

Artist Statement Submitted 2014

The human skull is one of the most powerful and oldest iconic symbols know to man. It has been used in art for centuries and carries with it an array of diverse and sometimes overlapping interpretations and meanings. Skull imagery has been evident in some of history's most impactful art, from Jose Gaudalupe Posada to C. Allan Gilbert, Shakespeare to Pieter Claesz, Frida Kahlo to Damian Hirst. The death of my father has effected me immensely and has found its way into my work. The cluster of feelings and representations that are attributed to the skull have become the perfect vessel to convey my conflicts regarding life, death, and mortality. By combining still life aspects into my portraiture photography, I have found a way to both communicate and represent my current circumstance. I explore the juxtaposition of life and death through the contrast of the skull and living subject.

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