The enduring power of tales, particularly via fairytales, folklore, and fables, is found in their universality and mutability. Their details shape and shift over time, adapting to ongoing cultural conditions while still containing the wonder and substance of the tale. Through storytelling, traditional tales connect us to a whole history of human experience.
In these images, I present details, remnants of potential wonderous narratives. The viewer is left to visually “read” any number of possibilities throughout the disruptive repetition of imagery. Here, elements are preserved, and the larger story falls away. Placed outside of contemporary time and context, the remnants allow for the mythic inventive space that the act of storytelling cultivates and encourages.
Many of the figures are caught in a state of repetitive anxiety—never arriving at the destination of their journeys, forever traveling towards or away from some thing which is yet unknown to us. They are forever in flight, struggling with their respective obstacles, hiding or looking out, venturing boldly or tentatively, and on guard. The viewer must struggle to make sense of these unnarratives, that which is not fully known or revealed.
The attempt to do so continues the rich history of storytelling’s transformation over time—from oral folktale to literary fairytale and childhood fable. The act on our part, to interpret the unnarratives, to uncover some encoded structure, functions as yet another re-telling.