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Storycatching / Ghost Prints

Amanda Ichihashi Jagerman

     Storycatching / Ghost Prints presents a multi-media collection of visually interpreted ancestral stories as well as narratives gathered from my community that explores how familial tales from the past reverberate & impact us on personal, social, national, & global levels in the present.  Deep interest lies in connecting heritage & history to the human condition & the “American” experience.

     As a mixed-race person with one Holocaust-survivor parent & another parent whose family was imprisoned in Japanese-American ‘internment’ camps, I grew up with intense & painful family stories inextricable from history.  Many photographs here were taken by my Grandfather during his imprisonment while other images serve as the only physical evidence of harrowing & prematurely extinguished lives.  

     By transferring family photographs onto ceramic slabs & wheel-thrown vessels, the memories of relatives live on through an intriguingly uncommon dialect for portraiture, thus uniting five generations across one century & three continents.  Large-scale, digitally altered photos infuse life, beauty, & statuesque qualities into the subjects while conveying stories & symbolically healing trauma.  Other illustrations & wheel-thrown & hand-carved platters depict archetypes of storytellers & goddesses.  Caught Stories, the narratives shared by my community, can be read at www.amandajagerman.com/caught-stories/.  The piece, Good Foundation, visually represents one of those narratives. 

     What begins as scattered images & shards of stories evolves into a trans-generational collage of reconstructed tales recalling current issues of immigration, race, authoritarianism, war, freedom, & resilience.  As heros & heroines of our stories, our predecessors are nourished by our presence & breath.  By sharing images & collecting narratives, I invite the viewer to delve within their bloodlines to reflect on their own role as storycatcher & storyteller while contemplating how the wisdom gleaned from such stories might impact their attitudes & behavior moving forward.

To inquire about digital alterations & printing for your photographs, contact the artist at amandajagerman@gmail.com