Chosen Memories: Contemporary Latin American Art from the Patricia Phelps de Cisneros Gift and Beyond

5 / 10

*Fading Field No. 1*

Elena Damiani. Fading Field No. 1. 2012

Inkjet print on silk chiffon with wooden frame and black wall, 69 3/4 × 52 7/8" (177.2 × 134.3 cm). Gift of Patricia Phelps de Cisneros through the Latin American and Caribbean Fund in honor of Mimi Haas. © 2024 Elena Damiani

Artist, Elena Damiani: My name is Elena Damiani and I'm a visual artist that lives and works in Peru.

Fading Field No. 1, as the title suggests, portrays a field or a landscape that starts vanishing, almost like if it was a memory or a recollection of a landscape. It's printed on a soft, translucent fabric—silk chiffon—and this translucency changes according to light and the position of the viewer.

The image that is printed on the fabric is made of two images. The one in the foreground is a black and white image of a mountain from the 1900s. And it’s framed by an image that shows the half dome rock from Yosemite in California. I was very interested in working with found material that already have an embedded story in it. So these physical layers that can be found in the collage also become different layers of meaning.

Landscape representation has been associated with the exploration of new territories, with belonging and not belonging, with ownership. Images have the capacity to open up and evoke millions of associations in collective memory. So by looking at the past, we can understand the present.

How do we perceive this image? And how does it become more visible from a certain point of view, but becomes a lost memory from another point of view?