Eyes of Artists

Hannah Smith Allen

Posted in photographers by Corey Presha on March 1, 2009

hannahsmithallen01
– I took a History of Photography class with Hannah last year at Rockland Community College. She had just finished her MFA at the School of Visual Arts and was a wonderful teacher, I learned a lot in her class. These photos are from her series The Battle of Monmouth, where she tries to create a photographic history for an event that predates the invention of photography.

Today the Battle of Monmouth exists in fragments. State boundaries arbitrarily delineate battleground from suburban farmland. Indeed, much of the history is buried under years of farming and industrialization. Still, in our attempts to understand the past, we mark the land create and create narrative out of experience. Even though history disappears into the present, we try to locate the historic in an empty field, a replicated object, or an illegible text.

These images represent a new photographic archive that attempts to describe an event predating the invention of photography. My photographs do not depict a single historic narrative. Instead, they uncover a series of fragments that suggest the limits and possibilites of historic meaning. In the end, history reveals via our interpretive choices who we are today as well as who we were in the past. Despite out inability to uncover a single truth, it is still important to examine how stories get told.

hannahsmithallen02

hannahsmithallen03
© Hannah Smith Allen
See more work here.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: