N.O.K-Next Of Kin
N.O.K.-Next Of Kin examines the ways in which American families memorialize their relatives killed in military conflict. I traveled throughout the U.S. to meet with relatives of fallen soldiers and to document their methods of coping with loss through the preservation of personal effects. Small, private monuments exist in garages, basements, and storage lockers across the U.S. Families must decide which objects to keep, what to take with them or let go of when they move or as time passes. Having served in the Israeli military myself, I became interested in the subject of memory specifically in cultures where loss is a substantial part of daily life. My work addresses the lived experience of conflict and trauma. My ongoing interest in the representation of war has led me to look beyond the phenomenon of large public monuments and to focus instead to the personal altars and private displays of mementos maintained by families of the fallen soldiers. Through images and testimonials, my project honors the dead while at the same time giving voice to a community of survivors who keep memory alive as they strive to rebuild their lives in the aftermath of loss.