A contemporary Russian saying claims that the past has become more unpredictable than the future. Nostalgia may depend precisely on the irrecoverable nature of the past for its emotional impact and appeal. It is the very pastness of the past, its inaccessibility, that likely accounts for a large part of nostalgia’s power.
But this is rarely the past as actually experienced; it is the past as imagined, as idealized through selective memory and desire. The work Nostalgia reflects on the mechanisms of nostalgia and questions ones solidarity with the past by visualizing memories too unpleasant or trivial to remember.
All images ©Johan Bergström