Jennifer Fagan

Daddy Daughter Dance, 2015
hand-stitched archival pigment print with vellum – 17 x 22 in.

I hold less than a handful of memories of my father who abandoned me at a very young age. I hold even fewer photographs of him. Memories of my father investigates the duality of memories and photographs. How a photograph encapsulates memories and how memories reside in photographs. I am interested in how a memory of a photograph can hold more charge than the actual photograph and how they are also able to construct lies.

A fascination of both family history and the way families use photography has inspired this work. By examining the absence of my father and my mother’s lack of relationship with her father, I aim to uncover patterns of this multigenerational breaking of traditional familial structures.

I have collected other people’s memories of photographs they have with their fathers and paired these next to my own family photos. The obvious lack of men in my photos creates a dialogue with these remembered fathers. I am investigating whether being raised in an exclusively matriarchal structure has left me with a father figure-sized gap to fill and memories left unmade.