Longitude | Ardent Harvest

Exploration through Landscape

New Visions 2016; “Longitude | Ardent Harvest”

She was mine and I belonged to her but these images represent home and my idea of love. The country home where I spent the first eleven years of my life, the city where I was born and lived as an adult, the Florida my family escaped to and her favorite city Las Vegas. He said he adored her but that was an illusion and this body of work depicts an illusionary secret life that changed my perception of love.

I begin this story in the desert, a place filled with magic and insight. This is the place where I witness my own shift in awareness and landscape becomes a representation of my identity. Landscape also has a recognized standard form that provides a perfect and familiar point of departure. I use a Holga Camera to create a visual echo by overlapping the composition. This fragmentation suggests a passage of time and creates an evocative rather than a descriptive image. This repetition suggests memory of a moment past and blurs the demarcation between still photography and cinematography. This imagery expresses the complicated layers of illusion that exist in my life. These layers are misty, atmospheric, intuitive and spontaneous. This abstraction creates an invitation, a window into my world that questions my perceptions.

The formative years of my life were spent in a small idyllic rural town twenty minutes west of Pittsburgh. My memories of this place were sweet and filled with promise. When I was eleven years old her world shifted and a rupture destroyed my world. Promises were made but never kept and his weakness filled our lives with travel and holidays. These holidays were lovely places and grand hotels but never celebrated on the corresponding dates. Disappointment is all we felt. Las Vegas was her favorite city for its illusion of opulence regardless of its deception and fakery.

Belonging to her and being her witness to her choices colored my world. Her influence still exists and now I see beneath my own skin. Our life was a story, an allusion, and a lie. We traveled to escape this reality but it always followed close behind. She found herself looking for love along the way, hoping for a change an only finding the unattainable kind. I came to realize the sadness I carried came from her. That love that we all deserve had completely eluded her.

These are the places I call home, the country home of a child, the city I was born and became an adult, the Florida we escaped to and her favorite city, Las Vegas. I dedicate this work to you Mom; only hoping some day you will understand me.

©Maria Bevilacqua 2016