While looking for inspiration for this triptych, I began by searching through photo albums of old family photographs. I quickly became inspired to create a piece that revolves around my great-grandmother. To completely understand the piece’s background, one should know that neither I nor the rest of my family knows anything about my great-grandmother. However, she put together a photo album of her own life. By looking through this, I was able to piece together some things about her. However, there is still so much that remains a mystery. I was most interested in the strange newspaper clippings, articles, and various other items she chose to include in her album.
Not only were the items included quite strange, but on each photo, her name was different. This became the main inspiration of this series of paintings. Each painting portrays my imagined different personas for my great-grandmother. However, each images has a strange and dark element, shedding light on a darker made up side of this woman I never knew.
The first image portrays my great-grandmother as Dorothy Corbett, a nurse splattered in blood. The second image shows Evelyn Corbett, who stands happily in front of a burning house. The final image shows Audrathe Corbett in her flapper persona standing next to a bird bath and dead little birds. For my pieces, I chose to make them look as if they are old fashion photographs, discolored with mysterious red stains and in black and white. I purposefully decided to keep the faces less rendered in order to add to the mysteriousness and vagueness of this women. Together, each image is my way of shedding light on my family’s past and the dark mystery of where I came from. Although, my imagined life of Mrs. Corbett may not be entirely accurate, it’s an interesting way to look at someone from my past.