Ahndraya Parlato is an American artist
Episode 234: Ahndraya Parlato is an American artist working in photography.
I had a lovely conversation with Ahndraya regarding her new book published by MACK this year. We spoke about the conditions and history of the book which deal with both motherhood and loss. It is a deep book filled with intimate portraits of Ahndraya and her family. It also features a number of intriguing components from still lives to the use of the historical hidden mother images in the work which asks viewers to consider motherhood, but also what is veiled and unveiled in a maternal connection.
The book also operates at the intersection of text and image and gives equal space and emphasis to each which also helps to enable the codified structure of what can be considered family photography and then tips the structure of that narrative into a mysterious and winding gyre of trans-generational personal consideration regarding the suicide death of Ahndraya’s mother. It asks the viewer to understand the fabrication of feeling surrounding motherhood when external factors of loss apply extreme pressure.
During the conversation, Ahndraya and I spoke about these very personal images and how the work can be arranged in regards to text, ceramics, and the archival interest in the hidden mother fad-a memento of images in which the mother hides behind the child, either under studio drapery or behind a studio chair in order to comfort the child and keep it still long enough for a photograph to be made. There is something in the transfer between mother and child in these images that functions as a metaphor for the conditions expressed between Ahndraya and her mother, and Ahindraya and her own children. It is a beautiful book. Please listen in.