The Failure of Grief
Saskia Pandji Sakti
Untitled 1 - 7, from the series: The Failure of Grief, archival pigment print, 52 x 42cm, 2012.
The Failure of Grief is a photographic series that explores the themes of grief and reverence. A kind of epitaph, or lament, it aims to speak to the viewer and warn them of their own mortality. It is also a meditation on the contours of absence, in a way, trying to make sense of the human impulse to mourn and the assumption that mourning is society’s only honest cure to grief. The Failure of Grief is an attempt to dramatise the mind in mourning, a mind that seeks to understand what happened to the vanished, (a mind) flitting from the pain of loss to the more metaphysical questioning of what constitutes a mortal life. This work aims to both capture and accentuate that profound disconnect.
The Failure of Grief draws upon society's existing notions surrounding death and bereavement, especially the ritual and myth associated with death and mourning in the west. It also draws upon Barthes’ Camera Lucida and its influence on the subject of photography and mortality.