Sabrina Jung
  death masks talk and Remain silent
zu den „Photographers masks of death“ 2014-2016
by Sabrina Jung

The work „Photographers masks of death“ deals with the question if portrait photos could be seen as an effigy of death. To construct the masks I use selected studio portraits from the 1940s and mount them on handmade masks made of plaster. In doing so I create bizarre „death masks“. Wrinkels that appear during the process remind of wrinkels in persons faces by growing older. Eyes and mouth look a bit twisted, it seems as if the persons being photographed are frozen during their death struggle. The mask presents the face like a grimace.
Combining photography and sculpture – portrait and the classical idea of death masks – you recognize that both media are presenting forms of memory and preservation. With the attempt of generating death masks humans try to capture death and the process of passing away while
simultaneously avoiing it. This idea is very interesting looking at portrait photos.

A photo records one moment in life, but we know, that their is a lifetime included. When lifetime is presented in the portrait, then the effigy of death would coincidentially be inscribed as well.

The portrait then indicates the forthcoming death as a symbol – trying to preserve life but simultaneously originating death. The portrait becomes a mask of death created by the photographer. Transforming the two-dimensional photo into a three-dimensional mask the idea appears visibly. The photographed person´s face becomes plastic, so it is touchable and in the same moment touching.