ELEGY TO MY MOTHER

May 2, 2010

On May 2, 2010, my mother died. It's still strange to hear those words. She was a remarkable woman, and crazy too. She loved people, her family and color. She and my father divorced when I was young, and her heart never recovered from that. I was with her in San Francisco (Oakland) for her last few days. She had kept the truth about her cancer from us, so my trip was unexpected and her passing came as a bit of a shock. While I was in her home, while she rested, I took the opportunity to photograph her surroundings. They say a lot about her. Some of these images bring a smile to my face - her organised chaos, love for entertaining and the color she surrounded herself with. But in many of these photos there are subtle and not-so-subtle images that speak to her demons - several freezers full of food for instance. Enough to feed many many dozens of people. The squalid little desk in her garage where she could smoke (it killed her) and chat on the phone for hours (she was nosy). Empty pots that speak of her love (and mastery in) Ikebana, but empty... Her life didn't turn out the way she expected, and her wealth didn't bring her the peace she needed. But the unconditional love she showed my sister and me will endure. I loved her and I miss her very much.