Latent Desire

June 11-July 3, 2016

Carl and Sloan Contemporary 

8371 N Interstate Ave

Portland, OR 97217

An object can be a touchstone to a memory.

But a memory is often a distortion of the original event. Every memory is a reinterpretation of the last recalling of the memory as if playing a long game of telephone with oneself. It becomes less and less authentic the more it is recalled as new fictional elements are added on to the original event. Over time, these added flourishes seem to reinforce the realness of the original event achieving a state of hyperreality.

A memory is further complicated when the object is translated through photography. The photograph becomes a signifier of an object, which is a signifier of a memory, which is already a detached signifier of a specific time and space worth remembering. These many layers of obfuscation begin calling into question the objective nature of photography and our own experiences.

Melanie Flood’s still-life arrangements resolve those many layers of obfuscation into one image. The photographs capture early 20th century hat forms made at Los Angeles’ oldest millinery. Their shapes seem familiar, but the manipulated photographs disrupt the desire to recall a clear memory of a past era through an otherwise mundane object. The process results in one unique final image—the vibrating layers of repetitive digital manipulations are not saved after printing, a reference to the ethereal nature of memory.

Latent Desire by Melanie Flood opens Saturday, June 11, 2016, 6–9pm and will run until July 3. For more information, please contact the gallery at 360.608.9746 or info [at]