Southern Poland, 1930. The times were hard, poverty was rampant, but perhaps there was hope for a better life and for change?
This is a photograph of my maternal Great Aunt Zofia and her husband with 3 of their children. Whenever I look at this photo my heart sort of breaks. I see a certain pride still evident amidst the tattered hand me down clothing, the cast away shoes, the remade dresses....it has a poignancy that touches me deeply. They are standing on what appears to be a high spot on their small land holding. At least they had this bit of land to call their own. In less than 10 years their world would fall apart with the invasion of Poland by the Nazis. And then their hardships would be even greater.....
I have not been able to find the link to this lost part of my family, although I believe that perhaps they are still there, in this quiet corner of Southern Poland. I have hopes that the family survived the 2nd World War. I am still searching for clues.
It was important to me to present this photograph in the most "natural" manner. The colors needed to be earthy, the textures homespun, no trace of anything shiny or glitzy. Yet, it needed to reflect beauty, their beautiful landscape amidst the deprivation, their pride of place in time.
I kept the color palette neutral, used inks and sprays, paper distressing, twine, cardboard elements and dried bits of flowers and pods from my garden along with paper ones...all in the hopes of reflecting the family's pastoral beauty.
This is my entry for the August Heritage Challenge.