Ships and Shards - A story: July-August 2014 Photo Bytes

June 24, 2014  •  Leave a Comment

It was my pleasure photographing porcelain shards dating from 1625 to 1865. These were illustrated with writings from the 1838 Amanda Babson diaries and the ship’s journal entries of Captain Edward Babson who sailed the Cadet, and then fired onto the old porcelain by artist Diane Chen KW. These are now a permanent installation in the collection of the Cape Ann Museum in Gloucester, MA.

Figure 1: War at Sea Figure 2. ShipwreckFigure 2. Shipwreck

Shipwrecks were quite common during storms and war with hidden danger around every corner. Treasures buried in the sands and journals left behind provide hints of a seafaring family’s way of life. 

With this set up in my studio, tethered to a laptop for instantaneous review, shards were photographed against a graduated grey background –

Figure 3. Shards in studioFigure 3. Shards in studio Figure 4. Shards in studio set upFigure 4. Shards in studio set up Figure 5. Shards in studio tether set upFigure 5. Shards in studio tether set up overview as well as macro detail shots.

Figure 7. CalmFigure 7. Calm Figure 6. DiastersFigure 6. Diasters

Then after assembly, embedded in sand and mortar as if found that way beneath the sea.

Figure 8. Diane with templates for AssemblyFigure 8. Diane with templates for Assembly Figure 10. Diane with wall installationFigure 10. Diane with wall installation Figure 9. Embedded in Sand and MorterFigure 9. Embedded in Sand and Morter

Final Installation is on four walls at the Cape Ann Museum, Gloucester, MA. (see below). A fifth wall will have Chinese export plates transformed by Diane KW using the diary and logbook documents.  Hope you can visit.

Wall IVWall IV Wall IWall I Wall IIWall II Wall IIIWall III

Judith Monteferrante Photography


No comments posted.