Elaine Miller

The Truth
pigment print
25 x 20 in.

My work explores the themes of death, transience, memory, preservation, and both the frailty and resilience of the human spirit through challenging experiences. This body of work is my direct reaction to the expected passing of my father, which was quickly followed by the unexpected death of my sister. Immediately following their deaths in 2009, I began photographing the remainder of my family with significant objects symbolic of my dad and sister. I wanted to produce a means for the living to interact with the dead, thus keeping those departed alive. I also use my work to illustrate the alienation I have felt as well as the fight to recover from the disconnect I built within myself as a coping mechanism. As time has passed, I continue creating portraits of my family to represent the various stages of grief my own psyche has traversed throughout the grieving process. I especially find catharsis in photographing my nieces and nephews, as they themselves are now the symbolic objects my sister and father live through.