Stephanie DeMer statement

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Traces is the gaze into darkness and the marks left while exploring existence. Loss of life, loss of time, and the ever pervasive desire to connect with the beyond are central to the photographic processes. Traces comprises two bodies of work, 33 Marks and Evoco. 33 Marks, is an ongoing series of folded or marked negatives indicating different moments in time in which I experienced the progression of cancer, illness and eventual death of my mother. The marks are struggles, realizations, and physical traces of the power of loss in our lives. Evoco utilizes the Claude Glass, a forgotten instrument of artists and the occult. The Claude Glass is a handheld black mirror used from the 12th to 19th century both as a device to refract light and reframe landscapes for painters as well as being used as a portal to the spiritual landscape by fringe mediums. I created a new camera device by replacing the traditional mirror with a black mirror so light passed through the negative first, then captured the image reflected in the Claude Glass. Joining the works together for the exhibition creates a space of contemplation and a way to move closer to the beyond.