Memory and Recollection:
By. Maxwell C Scott | October 6th 2016
On the Anniversary of my father's death last year, I decided to take a few moments to chronicle my memory of his life by listing a series of objects that have become intrinsic to our relationship and my recollection of it. These objects have been paired with a collection of audio recordings and voicemails from my phone that I catalogued after his passing.
Memory and Recollection: An Approach is the manifestation of a vast network of complex and intertwining neurologic impulses. Realized through the lens of otherwise banal objects that begin to take on a more supernatural quality. The relation of the objects to a persons life, to my own life, and to a series of ever dispersing connections in my brain.
There is a warmth that is created in each object. Each object connects something that is abstract with something that is more real, more physical and more immersive. The hope is that objects and audio construct a more lasting response that my senses can attach to. Our recollection is fleeting, it fades quickly but by immersing our senses into the process we can better construct a dialogue to surround the memory and more accurately preserve it.
A SUMMARY OF OBJECTS
The Old Pickup Truck:
They say that the ol factory is most directly ited to the memory. I can almost feel the scent of the cab in the old pickup truck. The steering wheel once covered with grip now polished perfectly smooth by the oils of hands. I can still feel the weight my father's hand on my head as I lay across the span of the cab. On route to some frozen pond up in Canada probably. The Prairie Home Companion is on the radio and he reaches over me to push the rectangular volume dial down and to the right, I fall asleep..
The Secret Spot:
This photo was taken unwittingly of me by my father using the Canon AE-1 35mm camera I would take everywhere at time. I am sitting down in the sun reading while my father is preparing breakfast in a skillet over the fire I helped him make moments before. The Adirondack air was crisp and a misty morning fog hung delicately over the still lake. It was three day canoe ride back to civilization in any direction you could paddle.
Mad Bomber Hat:
The fur on the inside of the hat would became an extension of his hair. A shield to battle the bite of the cold upstate New York air. I follow the trail of pine needles left behind in the snow as he drags the perfect christmas tree home.
Beets were my fathers favorite vegitable. They are the candy of the earth he would say. You can eat just about every part of the beet. The greens and stems can be boiled, chopped or pureed. They can add excitment to just about any dish.
I vividly recall one autumn day, after having returned home from a hike to the pond. I sat down for a fleeting childhood instant near the blackberry bush. Dad had just finished chopping some wood and carefully stacked it beneath the deck so that it may stay dry during the winter months ahead. As he returned through the kitchen door to the porch I granted my palate a reprieve from the handfuls of fresh blackberries, just long enough to admire my father from afar. He sat there, beautifully conforming to the repose of his favorite adirondack chair. Looked off into the foggy valley below, smiled and lit his cigar.
I used to sit on the heater next to the window in my father's old law office. He had a model car there I used to play with. A 1970 Jaguar convertible, his favorite car. Next to it was a heavy cast iron piggy bank where two football players would smash into one another and unwittingly deposit your small fortune. This place represents a time when our family was whole. My father's law practice was doing well and we would take family trips together. Then one day everything changed as things tend to do.