This photograph was both inside and outside of my grandmother’s sister-in-law’s adobe house near Ankara, Turkey. I was seeking scenes of people in liminal spaces such as windows and doors; in addition, a curtain—which both reveals and conceals—can be a metaphor for the difference between a perspective from the inside or from the outside of any situation.
The image used a pinhole camera that I made by hand from a paint can. Along its curve I made four holes and covered each one with electrical tape that worked like a shutter. Each hole exposed a
different image, making a collage on one sheet of 8x10-inch film. To me, the ephemeral, dreamlike quality of pinhole images underscores the instability of meaning and individual perception. The contingency of the medium mirrors the contingency of understanding and life itself. Although unmanipulated, the image is disorienting because of its multiple exposures and nearly infinite depth of field, which makes it like looking at the surface of reality from another dimension. Meant to create a sense of displacement as well as engagement, it is a kind of paradox that reflects theprocess of disconnection and connection or, more simply, the process of understanding. I believe we can only truly understand others by being in their locations, in their worlds.