Familiars: Photography as Memory - Quentin Shih

"I believe that photography is not about creation—it’s a process to evoke memory; to refresh something that already exists in our minds; something that is growing weak and abstract and needs to find expression" 

This is where I find 'myself' on this photography led journey. Like Shih, I find that the memories I hold are fading and becoming more abstract with elements forgotten and others added to take their places. These added 'imaginations' in my own work have been recorded through metaphor- less glimpses into things that remind me (or not) of childhood times spent. 

The main reason for this journey was to identify the under lying feeling of being split between two families. Having such an ever evolving interest in memory and the family album as a way of recording memory, yet not having the desire to photograph my own family album has been a difficult terrain to navigate both photographically and personally/mentally.

Its very interesting and almost refreshing to see this work by Quentin Shih where elements of memory have been recreated with simple props, lighting and elements such as colour that resonate with the past. My work has so far been very diaristic in my approach. Less prepared and organised, and more spontaneous in my recollections of past. 

Beach Jimu © Quentin Shih

Beach Jimu © Quentin Shih


Shih, Q. (2018). Quentin Shih – Photography & Films. [online] Quentinshih.com. Available at: http://www.quentinshih.com/photography/personal/memories_80s/memories_80s.html [Accessed 4 Jul. 2018].

LensCulture, Q. (2018). Familiars: Photography as Memory - Interview with Quentin Shih | By Winifred Chiocchia | LensCulture. [online] LensCulture. Available at: https://www.lensculture.com/articles/quentin-shih-familiars-photography-as-memory#slideshow [Accessed 3 Jul. 2018].