Holly Andres: The Fallen Fawn
Holly Andres’s The Fallen Fawn is a series of lush, cinematic work evoking the secrecy and wonder of adolescent girlhood. When mulling over a starting point for a new body of work, Andres kept returning to a story her two sisters—they are 8 and 10 years older than she—had recently relayed regarding a suitcase they had found as kids while playing by a river near their childhood home in Western Montana. The suitcase contained a woman’s ID, her purse, her makeup and her curlers, along with other clothing and ephemera. Andres’s two sisters took the suitcase home where, over the course of a summer, the contents became subsumed into the girls’ play clothes. Just a toddler when they found it in the mid-1970s, Andres does not remember dressing up in the clothes. “After hearing the memory retold, I couldn’t help but think about [the suitcase owner], and what her story was,” Andres says. “I thought that this would be an interesting point of departure for a series.”
In the resulting photographs, the work’s dramatic lighting and ominous subtext and Andres’s young protagonists project both the plucky curiosity of Nancy Drew and the fragile innocence of a sleeping Snow White.
Holly Andres uses photography to examine the complexities of childhood, the fleeting nature of memory, and female introspection. Typically her images rely on a tension between an apparently approachable subject matter and a darker, sometimes disturbing subtext. She has had solo exhibitions in New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Atlanta, Seattle, Istanbul, Turkey and Portland Oregon where she lives and works. Her work has been featured in The New York Times Magazine, Time, Art in America, Artforum, Exit Magazine, Art News, Modern Painters, Oprah Magazine, Elle Magazine, W, The LA Times, Glamour, Blink and Art Ltd. – which profiled her as one of 15 emerging West Coast artists under the age of 35.