unique chromogenic photogram
90" x 90" (3 30" x 90" panels)
Memento Mori is a Latin phrase that translates to "Remember your mortality." It is an artistic theme dating back to antiquity, and it refers to a genre of artworks that vary widely but which share a common purpose: to alter people to their ephemerality.
More than a work of art, Memento Mori acts as a catalyst for the human imagination to engage with questions surrounding the nature of life and death. It acts upon the mortal constraints of all people, and the finite, fragile boundaries of the human body.
Using the symbolism of nature, I created a triptych of a tree which illustrates new growth in the first panel, extends into full bloom in the second panel, and concludes with a third panel of dead branches and fallen leaves.
The tree exhibits a transitory beauty, an ephemeral symbol of mortality that engages the Earth as a living medium, and illustrates the passage of time.
The tree image is a living Memento Mori. Its purpose is to remind the viewer that death is an unavoidable part of life, something to be prepared for at all times. But the image of the tree also reminds us of something startling and important: life is meaningful, temporary, and sacred.
I produced this 7.5-foot-wide by 7.5-foot-tall work of art with a grant from The Celebration Foundation. Memento Mori is exhibited in a window front of an Amazon building in Seattle, on Harrison Street between 8th Avenue North and 9th Avenue North. It is displayed as part of Storefronts Seattle, a non-profit, which aims to activate empty storefronts with vibrant art and creative projects. I am one of only a few non-local artists granted participation in the program which provides opportunities for artists to create dynamic, engaging artworks that reach out to passersby and activate our built environment.
Memento Mori was installed on March 4, 2014 and will be on display until June 5, 2014, at which time I will transport the work of art to Portland, OR for a window exhibition at Blackfish Gallery.
You can read more about Memento Mori on a previous blog post here.
Below are photographs of the installation. Click on images to enlarge and read more.
Purchase a print of Memento Mori here.
If you have questions or comments I would love to hear them.
Much love to you all!