Dream Plane: War Stories
(Installation, digital photographic collages approximately 20x24" and artist book)
I make photographs and room-size installations. "Dream Plane: War Stories" is a research/exhibition/publication project. I will build an installation in the dining room of a family home and photograph it for exhibition and for an artist book.
Drawn from my family's experiences, records, memorabilia, and memories of World War II, this is a microcosm for our country's experiences, records, memorabilia, and memories at home and in service of that long and costly war.
In my parents' generation all young men were soldiers. During WW II my father piloted a C-47 troop carrier in the Normandy Invasion, making two trips from England. His brother was a radio operator on a small island in the Pacific. My mother's two brothers were also at Normandy in different capacities. The two families, neighbors in rural central Pennsylvania, anxiously waited together for sons, brothers and husbands to send infrequent letters and finally, after years away, to come home safely.
My father, like many WWII veterans, did not share his experience as a soldier. As the 20th century came to a close, my brother and I found a chest of memorabilia in our family home in Lewisburg, PA. We began to discover the relevant facts of his past and gained a picture of how our father and uncles came to maturity far from home, their world views forming within conflict. We understand much more about them, their parents, wives and fiancés and the huge gulf of communication that they all experienced during that war. Gaps remain as the loss compounds over time and spreads to individuals who never experienced the original conflict. Now, sharing this visual representation of memories and experiences, may help the viewer not only to connect to a specific time and place, but also to reach an understanding of the subtle and lasting damage that any experience of war inflicts on us all.
Place At The Table
Miriam with Young Allen