"Exhibiting You" - Story


By: gcowell
Submitted: 04/10/2010

Both photographs I am submitting deal with the theme of dignity in different ways. I took the photograph of my mother with her caretaker in 2007 at my mother's house while I was watching them interact handling household chores. My mother suffered from dementia but even as her personality and memories started fading away, she was determined to remain in the home in which she spent the majority of her life. She made her children promise to not move her into a care facility. By a stroke of luck, my sister found an older polish lady who agreed to move into the house. Not much younger than my mother, she was what my mother used to be: resolute, energetic, matter-of-fact and full of interesting stories. To me, the image represents the dignity that my mother was afforded by being able to remain in her home for at least a little while longer, as well as the quiet strength of the two women forming living together, forming a household and making a home. The second photograph depicts a security guard at a San Francisco museum. The grace and quiet dignity of the woman, taking a rest on a bench overlooking the city, struck me.

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