Forget me not

by Maria Antoniadou

“love smells like death” Georges Bataille, Language of the Flowers, 1929

Floriography during the 19th century functioned as a manner of an undisclosed and coded way of communication between individuals in order to indicate their feelings through a secret language of the flowers. This way of communication in the latest decades was somewhat replaced or accompanied by the use of vernacular photography as a way to communicate with their loved ones, by sending via post photographs followed with letters or written notes on the backside of them. The project focuses on the materiality of old family or found vernacular photographs and their virtual transference of memories and emotions always concluding to the death of the subject. The photograph as an object may function as a “micro-tomb” enclosing within it and preserving an instance in the face of time, and the album as a “graveyard” the totality of a collective space wherein lay moments gathered from time, in order to refute time. I use specific flowers and plants which according to Victorian Floriography dictionaries represent death, mourning, remembrance and immortality while combining my own perception and understanding of these terms since today.