Hence the charm of family albums. Those grey sepia shadows, phantomlike and almost indecipherable, are no longer traditional family portraits but rather the disturbing presence of lives halted at a set moment in their duration, freed from their destiny; not however by the prestige of art but by the power of an impassive mechanical process: for photography does not create eternity as art does, it embalms time, rescuing it simply from its own proper corruption.
The Ontology of the Photographic Image, André Bazin
Always remeber that you are absolutely unique - just like everyone else. Margaret Mead
The role of the family albums is to arrange, preserve and commemorate a history a single life thereby valuating it as an individual and unique. The Family Album - Reality of Fiction employs the convention of family photography as a representation of intimacy, emotions, memories and authenticity. Watching consectively the monochromatic photographs, it turns out that the pictures were entirely staged within a photographic studio. Action of each photograph takes place among cartoon sets, dummies and props and mannequins replaced real family members. The authentic social family model has been replaced with its representation. The person the Family Album is dedicated to, resembles Ed Atkins's characters: it is an artificial actor that has been factually born dead, created as an inanimate erzac, a human silhouette that has no influence of its creation and the processes it undergoes within the depicted reality. Simulteanously, the main “character” refers to the conception of Every-Man - a symbolic human being surpassing life. The persona is proves an universal, human's dummy. It passes through following life's natural stages: childhood, adolescence, maturity and senility. The series is based on found and personal family snapshots. The intimate, family photographs were mixed with the found footage and became a base for a standarized photographic reconstruction. The Family Album rather simulates an universal model of existence than reconstructs a particular story, exploring the memory, identity, social family model and uncannines of photography in place of its veracity and uniqueness .
The project comprises 41 photographs published in form of an album and exhibited as 20x30cm archival pigment prints. The series is accompanied with Family Album sketchbook, a separate publiaction of sketches: scenography, lightening set plans, notes and drawings that proceeded work in studio.
The series of black and white photographs is accompanied by the Making of project: http://agatawieczorek.weebly.com/making---of.html And with the sketchbook comprising of projects, plans and scenography for the studio sets: https://agatawieczorek.weebly.com/sketchbook--scenography.html