Ashley Gates is a Mississippi-born photographer living in New York. Her work has been exhibited at Aperture Foundation, the New Orleans Photo Alliance Gallery, the New Orleans Art Center, Sidney Mishkin Gallery, Brickworks Gallery, and Black Box Gallery, among others. Her book of found Polaroids, We Didn’t See Each Other After That, was included in the Phoenix Art Museum’s INFOCUS photobook exhibit and was selected by Indie Photobook Library founder Larissa Leclair as one of photo-eye’s Best Photobooks of 2016.
Small, Strange Things
In her memoir Hold Still, Sally Mann writes about the Welsh word ‘hiraeth,’ which literally translates to “distance-pain.” She describes it as “a near-umbilical attachment to a place, not just free-floating nostalgia or a droopy houndlike wistfulness or the longing we associate with romantic love. No, this is a word about the pain of loving a place.”
Instant film is the medium I always return to when I want to interrogate this ‘distance-pain’ and my own memories associated with a place. An instant photograph is an irreplaceable object and a physical manifestation of our strange and malleable memory. A quiet, internal association suddenly becomes tangible, like a talisman worth holding in my hands.
To view more of Ashley Gates’ work please visit her website.