HomeArtist's Statement

Artist's Statement

The Group project started unselfconsciously with a photograph of my 5th grade class at P.S. 161 in Brooklyn, NY in 1956. It was at the beginning an impulse akin to that of anyone who takes photographs of groups of people to record an event, to have a memento, a souvenir of a group of friends or relatives, to have something to look at to stop time. Over the next two to three decades this essential impulse evolved into a project, an idea, a concept. One that not only deals with time’s passage but also with the tradition of commemoration itself, social and cultural history, as well as the swirling, changing social interactions of a circle of friends and acquaintances living in a specific time and place, social and cultural history, a group biography. For many years this was a project without a final form. With the invention of the Internet, it became clear to me that the form for this undertaking had arrived at my doorstep. It not only had become the form for this project but also impacted its structure and content.

This is a visual manifestation of shifting “lines” of interconnectedness. These “lines” shift, intersect, start suddenly and can stop just as suddenly. One can think about this in metaphorically visual terms through the eyes of someone like Mark Lombardi or Edward Tufte. Groups, like Visitors is an ongoing project. Evolving over time with additions still being made from the past and the present, moving into the future.

Death: See In Memoriam on the home page. I have decided to put an in memoriam section on the site connected to the Groups project. Of course, at some point this general designation will not have much impact, as everyone pictured will have died, including me. I would appreciate it if anyone comes across an image of a person whose name they know but is not named on the site if you could let me know. Also, there is a place on the site called, Participate in the Groups project. So if I haven’t contacted you, there is a place where you can upload your information for the Individual pages. If you know someone who has died and is included in the In Memoriam section I would like to know that as well, with whatever particulars, birth and death dates that you know. Again, I would appreciate any and all of the assistance I just mentioned. My email is haroseman@vassar.edu. Harry Roseman 2006, modified 2007, Modified January, 2008.