I Am My Ancestors
My most recent work, I Am My Ancestors, is an exploration of family roots. In the fall of 2013, I traveled to Romania to make pictures and explore my heritage. I had the opportunity to visit an area where little has changed for several generations and to live with a family there. It was October, green, gold and orange, just after the harvest. The pumpkins had been gathered, wood piled for winter and the bounty of apples and pears transformed into fiery glasses of “țuica.”
I felt a kinship to people I’d never met before, in looks and in temperament. Their lifestyle reminded me of experiences I’d had with relatives in the U.S. I grappled with thoughts about identity, society and women’s roles. I was of this place but not from it -– a guest in one’s own homeland. So, dressed as my grandmother might have, I inserted myself into the daily scenes before me and into the photos themselves. I created images from memories of memories, and events that might have been.