We memorialize our dearly departed with photographs taken when they were still living. But artist Ludmila Steckelberg does the exact opposite by cutting the dead out of old photographs. See how she skims over the concept of death, permanence and absence in her series after the cut.
People take photographs to remind themselves of a specific moment frozen in time. It’s something that they would like to see anytime they wish so they capture that exact moment. It’s a way to remember and recreate a moment in time. But what happens after that moment has passed? Artist Ludmila Steckelberg explores that idea and hops a fence or two to ask more questions.
This series of photographs show empty spaces where loved ones of the artist once were. You can see the cleanly cut space that is devoid of a face, a body, an existence. Steckelberg cut out the photos of her dearly departed relatives in a series entitled “The Absence of All Colors.” The once black and white photographs are now sepia-toned, a patina bestowed upon them by the passing of time.
Steckelberg created a series of photos that asks questions about permanence and passing away. The photos are not manipulated digitally but are rather permanently altered with a cutting tool. The time of the living are reminisced but their bodies are nothing but blacked-out spaces. “The Absence of All Colors” asks another question, what about the other persons in the photographs? What do they feel about the blank spaces in Steckelberg’s photographs? That’s another heartbreaking story fit for another day.