© 2018 J. Hawkinson
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Remnants Series
mixed media on canvas
15'' x 15'' (approx.)

“The question of the archive is not [...] a question of the past. It is a question of the future itself, the question of a response, of a promise and of a responsibility for tomorrow”.

These pieces are part of an attempt to create a visual language for a family history. The practice of archiving experiences with materiality is fading and will soon be lost entirely in a world where memory is stored digitally.

Through a material process of concealing and revealing( with paint and the layering of the surfaces and fabric) the images are both blotted out and enhanced. This speaks to the reality of memory as an elusive vapor. Even in moments of perfect lucidity the mind cannot recall every detail to its fullest.

The objects in the paintings are heirlooms from my Great Grandmother; souvenirs she collected in her travels. I used to fabricate memories for the objects. Subconsciously, there was something intriguing about a tangible connection to the unknown. One day I will follow her path and return the bottles’ contents to their sources. A relic-driven pilgrimage, of sorts.

Archive binds the past to the future. The scraps of fabric sewn into the paintings are from my great-grandmother’s quilting materials, the remnants of her craft. This process of constructing and deconstructing has become integral to the creation of The Sands. The layering of materials bring a tangible nature to the passage of time, nostalgia, and hidden histories. In this strange collaboration, I can still be connected with her.