The magazine of the photo-essay
July 2019 back issue
Traces of Memory
“A free, really high quality photo-essay magazine.  Fabulous!” Stephen Fry. British actor, writer and film maker
As the granddaughter of a family from Sudetenland, Yvonne Most pursues her family roots photographically. In doing so, she discovers connections to collective experiences from traces of memory and historical research. Her photo series opens up a new view onto a region, a landscape with deeps scars, which is constantly evolving. The photographer is interested in the incomplete, the imperfections, and what happens or does not happen on the periphery. The photo series raises questions about the artist's own biography and enables the viewer to reflect on his or her need for an old and new homeland. “Yvonne Most manages to create feelings of longing, stories, historicity, and security from the dialogue between still lifes, landscapes and portraits. Her work describes an exploration and also represents a journey through time. The photographer presents her own pictures alongside historical black and white photographs taken by Sudeten German amateur photographer Josef Grossmann (1891–1970) in the 1920s and 1930s. In doing so, she refers to a time in which the world of mountains,
forests, and landscapes seems untouched, safe and sound. Grossmann’s photographs, however, do not just provide a look at a world whose reality would soon change. The pain that comes from separation and leaving one’s homeland is indirectly brought to mind in a new context through the mixture of old and new. Grossmann’s distanced view of the web of emotions that can be summed up under the term “homeland” is embedded by Yvonne Most into a network of direct confrontation with people. She shows us the people who suffered the loss and who carry its memory with them. Both the people and the landscape symbolize scars – places that no longer exist; people who had to leave; suffering, grief, expulsion, and their traces. In contrast to Grossmann’s photographs, Yvonne Most tries to grasp these missing parts and to deal with them as the descendant of a dying generation.” –from the text by Felix Hoffmann   Published by Kehrer Verlag
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by Yvonne Most