Photo exhibit showcases experimental methods to represent memories

Marna Bell's 'Imperfect Memories' exhibit at Light Work features black and white photography shot in an unconventional way to produce haunting results.

Memories haunt people. Marna Bell’s Imperfect Memories does the same and lingers in your head for days.

The exhibit is located in a quiet corner of the Community Darkrooms gallery at Light Work, and it consists of just 10 pieces. That’s all it takes.

All the photos are black and white, and they were shot in front of a flickering screen. The technique produces blurry images, giving Bell’s work an eccentric eeriness. People and movements captured in the frames are all everyday moments, but they’re the ones that easily go by unnoticed. Each photo seems familiar but obscure at the same time. They’re like the memories that were once clear but are now starting to become vague.

One of the intriguing images is "Memory 4," a shaky side shot of a man in a rimmed hat and suit walking down the street. The man’s face is hazy, and his features can’t be depicted. However, it resonates with the fuzzy memories of certain people. Their figures are still there, but somehow the details of their faces have unconsciously slipped away.

                                                                                                   Photo by Olivia Yang

"Memory 9" is another captivating photo from the series. It’s a blur of people caught in motion without showing what exactly they’re doing or where they are. With the same unnerving nostalgic effect, the people are like ghosts gliding in the frame and changing constantly. The photo effectively echoes Bell’s concept of the way memories morph as time goes by, and it creates a melancholy feeling.

Certain occasions and people are embedded in memories, but over time even the happiest moments crumble into mere fragments. Imperfect Memories gives form to that reality, and while the details of Bell’s photos will grow vague in minds, the haunting eccentricity is unforgettable.

Post new comment

* Field must be completed for your comment to appear on The NewsHouse
The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.