The Collage, Memoir I am
mixed media on found canvas, 1,10 m x 1,20m (47 in x 43 in)
Portraits of people, both, dear to me or unknown build the foundation of this work in progress. Over time I overlaid these images with an arbitrary collection of memories, drawings, snippets, single words and sentences. Whatever crossed my mind, whatever I listened to, whatever my hands could find during this process, got stuck on this canvas.
Day by day I added more impressions, corresponding to the daily intake of sounds and pictures by the human brain.
The healthy brain can process this information, put it into neatly arranged categories, and find it later.
The brain infected by Alzheimer's cannot. Words cannot be remembered even though they are still there. Names can no longer be recalled.
Neurotransmitters, which are supposed to transmit information through synapses to the next nerve cell, get sort of "sugar coated", clustered by sticky proteins that let the nerve eventually die.
The collage investigates this process of entanglement and disconnection. Feelings might be recognizable but they lose the middle, they become black or white. They are not stable and turn to the other side once they lose the context. What once was reassuring and familiar, might become scary and what was frightening may suddenly appear harmless.