Sunday, 4 July 2010
Work from Evidence.
“Angela Strassheim conceptualized her most recent series of images after learning of a violent crime that involved a student at the Minneapolis College of Art and Design, where she was teaching at the time. Strassheim developed the project utilizing a forensic technique commonly reserved for crime scene investigation, which she learned while working on the field for the Miami Forensic Imaging Bureau. In this particular body of work, Strassheim created her pictures through the application of a specific chemical spray called “Blue Star” to the walls of rooms where violent, aggressive acts were committed.
Long after the struggles ended in these spaces, despite the cleaning, repainting and subsequent re-habitation of the rooms, the “Blue Star” solution is capable of activating the physical memory of blood through its contact with remaining proteins on the walls. Long exposures- from ten minutes to one hour- with minimal ambient night light pouring in from the crevices of windows and doors, capture the physical presence of blood as a lurid glow: a constellation of stars embedded in the walls.
Through a long and painstaking research process, Angela mapped out the exact locations where violent, often horrific crimes were perpetrated. She convinced new owners and tenants, some unaware of the violent history of their residences, to revisit the unnoticed, unseen past. Angela captures the tracing of a final struggle through the hard evidence of a violent moment, thereby revealing the silent yet omniscient memory of everyday living spaces. The physical result of her work is a series of luscious, large black and white prints, which attract the viewer like stills from a film noir with their eerie seduction and mysterious quality. Ultimately, these images are honest and true to the original space; they make visible, once again, the traces of violence and death that took place in those spaces in a forgotten past.” – text via Marvelli Gallery.