Through the artistic project PERSONA Linda Bournane Engelberth is researching central problems connected to the photographic medium as a representation of reality. The starting point of PERSONA is the life of the artist’s mother, a life dominated by serious illness and immense challenges. The artist is staging herself as her deceased parent, investigating an alternate fictional reality, a flipside of the life lived.
The venture starts when the artist’s mother is at the age of seventeen. She’s attending college at the time, a period which she describes as blissful, unaware of the disease MS, that’s one year away from breaking out, leading to a physical condition that will change her life forever. Engelberth is applying her mother’s photographs as a foundation for her own work. Old pieces of clothing and objects generate the possibility for a photographic reanimation of moments from her mother’s life. By introducing models functioning as of her mother’s friends, she’s establishing historical and pictorial tensions, where photography as an autonomous medium of truth and representation are questioned – a medium in conflict with reality itself. Through the space of photographic fiction the artist is renegotiating a neoteric memoir, where her mother never gets sick.