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[ACCESS RESTRICTED TO THE UNIVERSITY OF MISSOURI AT REQUEST OF AUTHOR.] Isolation and removal from one's culture, or even detachment from the culture, can bring about a sense of displacement. The feeling of displacement is one that has a familiar undercurrent in society. The condition of displacement often can call into question the very nature of self, existence and humanity. Photography and certain symbolic imagery is used to characterize these feelings in the works discussed in this paper. My photographic language intimates the sense of belonging and not belonging and it allows finding a new sense of place to remedy the feeling of displacement as well as come to terms with the dichotomous nature of reality. Dichotomies are explored within the context of this work. In my work I evoke the contrasts that exist in the real and unreal, the material and the ethereal, the rational and the irrational, and even life and death. The materials used in the scenarios I create emphasize and characterize the dichotomies of existence. Used and photographed with a nameless human figure are dirt, salt, branches, hair and paper. Each one of the materials is employed to create tensions and add symbolic meaning to an imagined scene, and leave the viewer with the sense of the contrasts embodied within the work. These materials interact in the work to build invented moments that mirror or even distort reality.
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