Family Album

1973 | 00:09:45 | United States | English | B&W | Mono | 4:3 | Video

Collection: Early Video Art, Single Titles

Tags: Family, Feminism, Memory, Video History

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Over a montage of family photographs, Freed’s narration questions the consistency of memory and self over time, with Freed displaying a quizzical and sometimes hostile relation to her past. In a manner that recalls philosopher Roland Barthes’s poetic unraveling of photography—in particular photography’s power to bind memory and desire within a still image—Freed attempts to uncover the “stranger” that is her childhood self and discover how her past has shaped her present.

“As Art Herstory was about time in history, Family Album deals with time in memory. Using photos and film footage from my past, I mix past and present and superimpose my then-present face over a photo of my childhood self. Time is arranged non-sequentially in the mind. Memories of relatives are brought in to contrast with my own.”

—Hermine Freed