Lauren Simkin Berke
Excavations and Adaptations is a series of more than sixty small works that combine ink drawings from my sketchbooks (through the use of xerox transfer) with collage. The drawings are mostly based on photographs, both found and personal, with a few drawn from direct observation. The collages vary from simple swaths of color to complex abstract patterns.
About five years ago I started to collect old photographs, and then I began to draw from them. I find these photographs at flea markets, in antique and junk shops. They are often family snapshots, from the 1920s through the 1970s, or studio portraits from the last quarter of the 19th century. I find it strange that these documents are for sale as part of a consumer market place, instead of being in albums on bookshelves in the homes of the families of those in the photos. I find myself at the intersection between a fascinated voyeurism and a determination to know these documents as well as humanly possible in order to give them new, longer life.