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Diana Cheren Nygren


The Persistence of Family

During the isolation resulting from the pandemic, family has taken on a new centrality.  Our connections to our ancestors and our descendants often feel stronger than connections to those around us.  The images in this series are composites of my old family photographs, photographs I took of my children as they grew, and the New England landscapes in which my children and I grew up and became people. With these images, generations reach for each other across time. They are also, in many ways, self portraits. I exist in the tension of the space between those who came before me and those who will come after. Driven by a longing for connection, the images make real those things I hold dear..

Though rooted in personal narratives, the pictures address a universal experience.  They interrogate the way in which our family relationships and history play a role in shaping our sense of ourselves and our understanding of our place in the world.  And they suggest that perhaps the present, in each of us, contains both the past and the future.  Ultimately, “The Persistence of Family” portrays the layered process of becoming, and the complex interweaving of time, place, and identity.

Diana Cheren Nygren


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