Specimen is a series that attempts to add permanence to the temporal nature of personal experience. By bottling the physical traces left behind from significant life events, objects that which would otherwise fade with time are preserved. A removed tooth, lover’s hair, kelp from a trip to the shore, all these mementos spark nostalgia, and are shown in an ultimately futile attempt to preserve them from wear and age.
The Ambrotype (Wet-Collodion poured onto a glass plate) as well as the subject matter, both reflect the inherent duality of glass as a permanent container and a fragile medium. Each sealed vessel contains personal effects as well as elements sampled from nature.
Invented in 1851, the Wet Collodion process entails coating a glass plate with collodion and exposing the plate while it is still wet. The end result are ambrotypes, appearing on glass in the form of a negative until backed by black velvet, thus rendering the positive image.