This archive illustrates the evolution of my practice; it traces the ways in which, earlier work has influenced the development of my current practice while highlighting the approaches, that over the past couple years, have supported the clarification of my artistic research. Practice-based research and experimentations allowed my work to take new directions, to develop and evolve organically. The contextualisation of the work demonstrates a reflective process, which ultimately led my work to shift from the exploration of memory and nostalgia to notions of domestic disruption and the uncanny.
Oil on Aluminium
40 x 50 cm
Head underwater, a bath of domestic ducks.
Bathing emerged through the creative process of understanding how bird imagery might be meaningfully utilised and visualised within my painting practice. My aim was to identify a unique, uncanny way of portraying domestic disruption. The inspiration for the work first came from a photo of my grandparent's bathroom, located in the same lake house that has haunted my dreamworld and stimulated my research on the notion of home. The composition of Bathing reconstructs my childhood memories of bathing in this very bath, where oxblood tiles form the floor and walls, enclosing in the edges of the bath, dominating the interior space. This domestic environment and the palette of the tiles influenced my decision of depicting ducks to portray and represent the disturbance.
Notions of anxiety, disruption and nostalgia are presented in the composition. The voyeuristic quality of Bathing invites a sense of nostalgia to be triggered in the viewer, as the ducks bring to light a desire for inner self-expression. The viewer is invited, in an intimate and immersive way, to observe the process of bathing. The immersion of the female figure is aimed to unsettle and to awaken ominous themes, while the materialisation of the ducks is to encourage a sense of comfort and safety. The bath, badge of homeliness and security, is depicted to transport its image into a darker domestic reality. The ducks, authentic observers of the scene, embody influences from a distant past. Mallard, ancestor of the domestic duck, as suggested by Darwin (1883), holds a symbolic presence in relation to notions of escape or safety. Seven Mallard ducks are portrayed; layers of impasto and glazing place emphasis on their vivid green heads, their rich maroon feathers, their bright white wings and orange feet. Some ducks float upright, some are upside down to convey meaning, to emphasize the pose of the female figure and the uncanny atmosphere. The figure is dissolving, embraced by the darkness of the water. The warmth of her colouring is intended to create tonal contrast, particularly when associated with the most saturated of all, the ducks' yellow bills.
The disruption derives from another kind of bird: the duck. I find ducks to be extremely interesting creatures; I chose to depict the mallard duck as it is a familiar sight to many. Duck imagery may be viewed as unremarkable, but when presented in an interior space, suddenly it becomes remarkably odd. Ducks are symbolic for childhood, bathing and bathrooms and therefore, are often associated with bathtime.
Bathing is intended to be an uncanny portrayal of an ordinary event, representative of universal childhood experiences. Rubber ducks, popular childhood toys, are aimed to release the anxiety of children during bathtime and have been an essential part of the daily ritual of bathing. "Anxieties arise over the possibility of being sucked down the drain or drowning, water temperature, being in an enclosed space, shampoo in the eyes, and the loud noise of water gushing out the faucet." (Meyer, 2006, p. 15)
Pierre Bonnard (1867-1947) was a fundamental reference, his work displays the artist's fondness for themes of bathing and memory. Depictions of female nude floating in a bath occur frequently in Bonnard's work; in Nude in the Bath (1936) he portrays his companion and muse, Marthe de Méligny, enclosed in a translucent space during an intimate moment of the daily toilette. “The woman is enclosed, as if in a shell or a womb. She floats in the water that surrounds her, in the manner of a Monet water lily or a drowning Ophelia. She is not of this world, nor a part of the continuum of time as we know it. Neither dead nor alive, she exists in her self-enclosed realm.” (Newman, 1984)
Another relevant influence is Lee Miller; her photographic work, during the period of World War ||, is of particular interest to me. Miller followed an unconventional approach at war photography, engaging with notions of the everyday and the ordinary, focusing on the disruptive nature of war through the depiction of domestic scenes and spaces. In Lee Miller in Hitler's bathtub (1945), Miller and fellow photojournalist David E. Scherman entered Hitler's apartment and bathtub. This uncanny depiction of the act of bathing is uncanny and extremely thought-provoking.
An unconscious expression of faecal elements appears within the work. The solid surface of the background, it's linear division together with the reflections of the bath, serve to reinforce a sense of enclosure. Studies on domestic themes are centred around the bathroom scene, which is frayed with meaning; the female figure is enclosed in a long-familiar environment in hope to open emotional realms. The domestic environment, the relationship between human and bird and the figure's enclosure are all intended to veil moments of unconscious thought. Although I was satisfied with this particular depiction of domestic disruption, I decided to focus later works on pigeon imagery to best portray the uncanny strangeness I am currently after.
A chair, between standing and falling.
CHAIR |, CHAIR || 2020
Digital Photographic Collage
42 x 59 cm
CHAIR |, 2020
CHAIR ||, 2020
Throughout the development of my practice, I utilised photography as a tool to ponder on what captured and to produce references for paintings. I produced this two-piece series, Chair |; Chair ||, with the intention of utilising my photographic practice to depict the domestic, the familiar and the ordinary.
Chair | and Chair || showcase uncanny investigations of the notion of home, and my longing to transform the familiar into strange. Themes of absence, abandonment, loss and loneliness are presented in the interior scene, while a sense of disruption is evidenced by the sudden exit of the female figure. By presenting the two photographs simultaneously, I aimed to underline the message that they carry, along with the uncanniness exhibited in the juxtaposition of these seemingly quotidian scenes.
My morbid curiosity about living spaces compels me to rely on photography, to capture and portray fleeting moments of ordinary life. Oftentimes a direct translation of reality is not enough, therefore, I tend to alter my photographs both digitally or by hand in the darkroom, in order to create an image that goes beyond the ordinary. These photographs have been digitally manipulated to reconstruct my own idea and memory of that particular moment and to give prominence to the narrative I am after. The compositions of Char |; and Chair ||, were reworked on Photoshop, collaging various images, adjusting colours and lighting in order to create the desired atmosphere. The experimentation with photographic collage was inspired by the work of Dora Maar (1907-1997). Her surrealist photography and her collaged images give emphasis to the unconscious in a breached reality. The disturbing and unsettling voyeuristic quality of Thérèse Dreaming (1938), influenced the design of my compositions. Balthus (1908- 2001) depicts a pubescent girl, as she leans on the back of her chair, exposing herself. Balthus portrays Thérèse Blanchard, his model and muse, as a dreaming girl in an interior domestic space.
In Chair |, the domestic background encapsulates the female figure, as she sits on the chair. Symbolic elements manifest in the plant held by the figure, an embodiment of life in a dormant state, in the placement of the chair and in the spread of her legs. The presence of the chair, a seemingly protective and restful space, is revealed as a solitary refuge for the young woman portrayed. Unsettling familiarity is expressed through the space around the sitter, the character of the chair and its plastic covering. The arresting inclination of the chair is aimed to provoke thought in the viewer, suggesting a sense of impending doom. Here the chair almost becomes a metaphor for home and the sitter's internal world.
Dorothea Tanning (1910–2012), whose work always seems to explore beyond the everyday, has been a constant influence in my practice. The unfamiliar and her unique power to induce strangeness, are evidenced in Musical Chairs (1951), a portrait of an adolescent figure and her red chair, depicted while falling into a prismatic realm defined by abstract shapes.
The eerie setting of Chair || resembles that of Chair |: the figure is absent and the reclined chair has collapsed. An uncanny sense of discomfort is announced by the abandoned chair. The domestic object itself implies previous human occupation of space, and therefore, highlights the feeling of absence. The isolated chair is representative of a solo existence, former witness of ordinary actions, it becomes an ambiguous metaphor of the past and the impending future.
"These pictures are so clear.
They are like transparencies set before candles in a dark room"
(H.D.,1944 p. 21)
Dark Room ||, Sanctuary (Ferrara, Italy), 2020
DARK ROOM ||
Dark Room ||, Untitled (London #1), 2020
Dark Room ||, Untitled (Berlin #1), 2020
Dark Room || presents black and white film photographs of various domestic spaces, shot with 35mm film cameras and taken in Berlin, London and Paris. I began the series by photographing female subjects in their home, observing the arrangement of their interior spaces, in search of a moment where a sense of disruption can emerge. My intention was to capture an eerie juxtaposition between the familiar comfort of home and an uncomfortable sense of estrangement.
"The practice of photography reflects and is actively part of the social creation of community, family and self. It is a way of constructing and also, at times, deconstructing the familiar"
(Raymond, 2019, p. 5)
My ongoing interest in the spaces we inhabit led me to a search for another form of expression and image-making. My photographic practice reflects concepts related to the notion of home, as an uncanny space that is familiar yet disturbing. I delved into film photography, to capture an unsettling sense of disturbance within the domestic space. I found photography to be a great medium to employ in pursuance of the depiction of the uncanniness of the home, "the photograph's uncanniness inheres, in part, in its capacity to show that all we see are traces - and that all we, as embodied entities, are nothing but traces." (Raymond, p .16)
Dark Room ||, Untitled (Berlin #2), 2020
Dark Room ||, Untitled (London #2), 2020
In my practice, fundamental concerns lay in the process of creating the appropriate atmosphere for each individual photograph, hence, light and shadow are essential and are usually arranged by hand in the darkroom. The metaphor of the darkroom is suggestive of a process of self-reflection in H.D.'s The Gift (1941-43). The memoir became an important resource for my understanding of the significance of the domestic space. H.D. responds to Freudian psychoanalysis, recording childhood memories and redefining the metaphor of 'home' in her opening chapter "Dark Room", where the writer explores a connection between domesticity and the unconscious: "to develop long strips of continuous photographs, stored in the darkroom of memory" (H.D., p. 50)
The darkroom process allows me to have complete control over the medium; unfortunately, due to the current pandemic crisis, I was unable to engage in the sensory experience of the darkroom. Thus, the films were sent to be processed via post. To combat the flatness of the scan and to recreate the effect of the analogue process, each photo has been manipulated with Photoshop. These effects are designed to produce a soft-focus which gives priority to the scene, the surface and not the detail. Black and white films support my representation and the manifestation of themes of absence, confinement, death and domesticity. Glimpses into ordinary domestic worlds convey private moments embedded in unsettling atmospheres.
Dark Room ||, Untitled (London #4), 2020
In my photographic practice, I seek to evoke uncanny moments of disruption. Roland Barthes (1915-1980) suggests that what is uncanny is the punctum: "this element which rises from the scene shoots out of it like an arrow, and pierces me" (Barthes p.26) In Camera Lucida (1980), Barthes emphasises and examines connections between photography and death, in relation to the fragility of memory. In the series, uncanny, disrupted manifestations of the ordinary, are captured within the boundaries of the home. The photographs are connected to the experience of haunting, uncanny situations that occur within the everyday. Through the action of light, I am able to manifest inner realities and to transform an abstract concept into a physical reality.
Dark Room ||, Untitled (London #3), 2020
Dark Room ||, Untitled (London #5), 2020
Dark Room ||, Untitled (Berlin #3), 2020
My aim is to transform ordinary interiors, and bring into view overlooked aspects of the human experience, that often occur within the domestic space. To reveal what is hidden behind the ordinariness of domestic settings is the focus of my investigation. My work simulates a feeling of everydayness: "the everyday escapes. This makes its strangeness - the familiar showing itself (but already dispersing ) in the guise of the astonishing." ( Blanchot, 1969, p. 240) Jeff Wall's photographic practice and his evocations of the everyday have influenced my work. The contemporary Canadian artist's cinematic large scale photographs, capture ordinary scenes while blurring the boundaries of reality. In The Destroyed Room (1978), Wall recalls Delacroix’s composition of The Death of Sardanapalus (1827), documenting a bedroom, challenging the reality of the space and allowing meditation on a past moment of destruction. By maintaining the voyeuristic point of view of my oil paintings, I aim to trigger wondering in the audience and to allow the viewer to give form to a response that relates to their own experiences.
Dark Room ||, Untitled (Berlin #4), 2020
Dark Room ||, Untitled (Berlin #5), 2020
Dark Room ||, Untitled (Paris #1), 2020
In pursuance of a cinematic aesthetic and a sense of familiarity, I delved into the works of Cindy Sherman and Gregory Crewdson. Sherman's Untitled Film Stills (1977-1980) "are like a lexicon of poses and gestures typical of respectable, but still uncanny, femininity" (Mulvey, 1996, p. 74) These black and white images demonstrate her distinctive cinematic style, depicting a sense of alienation with Sherman as the woman protagonist. I'm fascinated by the apparent ambiguity and voyeurism of Sherman's work, which ultimately speaks of femininity, in a tense and uncanny manner. Crewdson too depicts the uncanny, with his familiar yet unfamiliar photographs of interior suburban spaces. There is an otherwordly element present in his work, that I'm particularly captivated by. His atmospheric compositions and his cinematic use of lighting are key influences on my work.
Dark Room ||, Untitled (London #6), 2020
Maya Deren's Meshes of the Afternoon (1943) influenced the production of Dark Room. The American avant-garde film is seemingly a nightmare revealed through the eyes of a woman in an uncanny, at times dreamlike interior space. Deren's narrative explores themes of anxiety, death and identity; her constant use of repetition and symbolism allowed me to form new connections and ideas in my own work.
My photographic process had been influenced by Lee Miller (1907-77) since I received Lee Miller’s War (1992), a book of photographs taken from 1939 to 1945. Miller's black and white war photographs engage with the idea of the ordinary, whilst depicting the disruption of World War ||. Dolphin Court (1940) is one of my favourite photographs, it illustrates an intense juxtaposition between familiarity, the fragile safety of space and the unfamiliarity of the effects that war has on the domestic and the ordinary.
Dark Room ||, Untitled (Berlin #6), 2020
Francesca Woodman (1958-81) has been an ongoing source of inspiration throughout my photography practice.
Woodman’s House Series (1975-1978) evokes themes of absence, identity, homeliness and vulnerability in obscure uncanny interiors. Her way of creating movement by blurring the boundaries of her own body, her disturbing fusion with the decaying walls of the abandoned home, produce the uncanny effect and the unsettling disturbance that I aim to portray in my own work.
The notion of the uncanny is crucial to Woodman's work, in relation to Freud's unheimlich house, her haunting portrayal of the home can be understood as repression and a longing for the return home, "the former heim [home] of all human beings". (Freud, 1919, p. 245)
Dark Room ||, Untitled (Berlin #7), 2020
DARK ROOM |
Developing ideas into fruition.
Darkroom | is a selection of black and white film photographs; this experimental series of photographs later matured into Dark Room ||.
I delved into analogue photography in search of a new form of expression.
Film developing and processing was entirely new to me, but after the induction, I began to feel at home in the red-lit darkroom. The photographs were taken during a visit to my friend Anna's house; her childhood home has a unique shabby charm, that I was particularly inspired by. My aim was to capture an intimate relationship with the interior space, Anna was included in the images, in favour of authenticity.
Dark Room |, Untitled (London #1), 2019
Dark Room |, Untitled (London #2), 2019
The purpose of the visit was to find a way to express concepts, ideas and thoughts through the medium of photography. As I read Francesca Woodman, On Being an Angel, a book on the photographic work of the incredibly intriguing artist, I was inspired by her unusual, dreamlike manipulation of domestic environments. The way her work associates the familiar with the unfamiliar, to evoke uncanny feelings, is of particular interest to me. I planned to use the images as a source for new concepts and ideas; later I relied on the photographs for the design of the composition of A Reminder and The Staircase. Through the Dark Room | series, I discovered an alternative to the black and white vintage photographs I used as a reference in the past.
Dark Room |, Untitled (London #3), 2019
Dark Room |, Untitled (London #5), 2019
Dark Room |, Untitled (London #4), 2019
Dark Room |, Untitled (London #6), 2019
THE STAIRCASE 2019
Oil on Aluminium
35 x 45 cm
I began to research the notion of home, in connection with the realm of dreams and related symbolism. Bachelard's The Poetics of Space gave me an insight into the innate connection between one's mind and its surroundings. Hence, it aided the development of my research, by outlining concepts and theories for my practice to respond to. The inquiry of my research was focused on the essence of the home. I researched artists who engaged in similar sensations, thoughts and experiences. The Staircase was a result of a collage of film photographs, taken during the making of Dark Room |.
The Victorian house was dusty, tainted by wear and tear; it was a source of great inspiration and the ideal setting for the composition. The aluminium panel supported my painting, muted tones of oil paint set the scene, while velvety accents of red direct the viewer's gaze to the staircase. A female figure is depicted as she is sitting, her body almost sliding down the stairs, she's holding on to the handrail, vaguely glazing at the front door. A cabinet appears under the stairs, partly open; through a crack where a knob could have been, a dim reddish hue comes into view.
During the process of creating The Staircase, I visited Guillermo Lorca's exhibition in Asprey, London. I was interested in the way his paintings are able to evoke reality, at the same time breaking the boundaries of traditional realism. The uncanny atmosphere that his paintings emanate, the juxtaposition of animals, figures and interior spaces influenced my work. Throughout my research, I came across images of the 18th Century Cabinet de Curiosités of Joseph Bonnier de La Mosson. Photographs of Andrè Breton's, author of the Surrealist Manifesto, promoted and extended my research on the longstanding image of the cabinet of curiosity. Breton, the avid collector, converted his home in a living cabinet of curiosities. I was inspired by the above-mentioned, to introduce the concept to my narrative, in hope of recreating the uncanniness that envelops the Cabinet de Curiosités.
The Staircase introduced bird imagery into my painting practice. The bird emerged as an intuitive addition to the work, perhaps it was influenced by the exploration of artistic ideas through the above-mentioned research, together with studies on Bachelard's The Poetics of Space, particularly chapter four titled 'Nests'.
"For a bird, a nest is no doubt a good warm home, it is even a lifegiving home, since it continues to shelter the bird that has come out of the egg" (Bachelard, p. 93) I initially became attracted to Bachelard's comparison of home to the image of the nest; a nest that brings you back to childhood experiences. An introspective reflection urged me to also consider the notion of home as a cage.
My childhood bedroom was adorned by countless Egyptian papyrus; Toth, the Egyptian god of wisdom was right across my bed, illustrated with the head of an ibis. The secret African ibis is a silent guardian of the house; guardian of the threshold between our world and that of shadows. The Staircase marked an important shift in my practice. Through conversations with tutors and quiet moments of introspection, I decided to continue to engage with bird imagery. This development clarified my research, strengthened my practice and connected my exploration of the home to the concept of domestic disruption.
A REMINDER 2019
Charcoal on Panel
51 x 61 cm
The charcoal piece was part of practice-based research on the notion of home, inaugurated by The Staircase.
After my visit to Dorothea Tanning's exhibition at Tate Modern, Tanning became a significant influence on my practice. Her enigmatic paintings combine the familiar with the strange; her pictorial work, in particular, Birthday (1942), directed my research towards the experimentation of a more uncanny narrative. Her use of symbolism reinforces the representation of unknown yet knowable states, and continuously inspires the design of my compositions.
Layers of charcoal expose a composition with a symbolic narrative, that originated from black and white film photographs from Dark Room |. As I was creating the elements with my own hands, I experienced a positive connection with the work and the materiality of the charcoal. I was able to form patterns, lines, shadows and highlights, alterations and corrections were effortless; ultimately I managed to form the obscure atmosphere I was aiming for.
Although the two figures are not actively interacting, a soft-spoken, veiled bond is still present. An involuntary association appeared, the mythological story of Leda and the Swan seems to be the prevailing reading of the scene portrayed. Consequently, I decided to direct future depictions of birds, to the more mundane one of the pigeon. The symbolic presence of the door suggests the above-mentioned influence, along with the representation of a possible escape into another world. Against the door ajar, the female figure stands straight, her gaze connecting to the viewer. A damask pattern reveals a soft and dusty sofa. The sofa arm holds her weight, while the sacred ibis lays his body across the sofa's back, almost withdrawn from the scene. The connection that the sofa offers to the figure and the bird links back to its emblematic and symbolic functions; a sofa promotes interaction, it represents the more public and shared parts of our lives.
Previous works dealt with the notion of nostalgia, with connection to childhood, dreams and memories. Visual investigations presented elements of surrealism and disrupted realism within small scale, drawings, paintings, photographs. I aimed to make old fading memories, become physical lasting representations of my identity.
Mixed media on Paper
13 x 21 cm
Sketchbook paintings depict moments of personal,
ancestral and collective memory.
Small scale oil paintings promoted intimate observations, calling upon the viewer’s senses, with the intention of sparking emotional investment. Introspective conversations took place throughout the process of designing and creating the work. The multilayered paint narrated past experiences, to restore a sense of belonging. I began using aluminium panels during the making of this body of work and discovered the ideal resistance, aesthetic and archival properties to support my oil paintings. This body of work was presented in a deep yet muted colour palette. Compositions reminiscent of memory were adopted in order to create a nostalgic atmosphere, aimed to draw the viewer into the picture.
Photography has always been a fundamental element within my practice; as memory creator and protector I utilised the medium throughout the development of concepts, ideas and references. Autobiographical notions emerged from photographs from my family album, where ordinary scenes of human connections together with quiet moments of contemplation, become one with salient whispers of undocumented memories.
SOLITARY BINGE 2019
Charcoal on Panel
21 x 21 cm
A photo of my grandmother inspired this work, the choice of material was intuitive, yet experimental as this was my first attempt at charcoal on panel, a medium and material that I have since used multiple times e.g. A Reminder. The velvety quality of charcoal fused flawlessly with the absorbent properties of the encaustic panel, creating the desired eerie ambience. An explosion of powdered charcoal, envelops the woman’s head of raven hair, calling attention to her soft features and full freckled cheeks. Her melancholic eyes hold sorrowful memories hostage, while her body is in the process of engineering a coping system that will, only momentarily, distract her burdened mind.
The setting of the scene is indicatory of the obscure subject matter, however, it’s thought-provoking nature has the potential to be open for individual interpretation. Through conversations with tutors in connection to Solitary Binge, I became familiar with the work of Francesca Woodman, her photographic practice is currently a relevant influence on my work. Solitary Binge marked a shift in my practice, it revealed my interest in interior, domestic spaces and aided the development of my composition design, which currently focuses on intervals of blank space and small details.
GROWING ENGINE 2019
Oil on Aluminium
31 x 31 cm
Growing Engine is representative of diverse notions of memory.
Procedural memory stands for previous experiences that lead our body, to instinctively remember how to act and what to do. Riding a bike is a task that generally does not require our conscious to be aware, therefore, it may leave scope for our declarative memory to explore our inner world.
This was my very first experiment with aluminium; this surface has since supported all of my oil paintings. The initial inspiration for the design of the composition emerged from a black and white photograph from my family album. The scene portrayed is based on a second-hand memory, that reflects collective childhood experiences. The child is depicted in the attempt of riding a bicycle, the bike is outmoded and stridulous, but no matter how remote it may appear, it is the ideal match to the engine that is the human body. An object with time travel properties, the bicycle, is a symbol of human evolution, human search and human need for independence. At a young age, it teaches us to find and exercise our instincts, it develops discipline and it trains us to find our inner balance.
The child, the growing engine, is symbolic of the human condition. The arm of a mother appears to invite the young child to earn his freedom, to accept the likelihood of missing a pedal and to fall once or twice.
In the portrayal of the boy’s face, I aimed to express his resistance in leaving the familiar yet shadowy environment, frightened to pedal his rusty bike into the unfamiliar yet bright tomorrow. Notions of the familiar and unfamiliar, developed through the analysis of the Growing Engine, this concept is being expressed in my current painting practice.
OVERCOMING ABSENCE 2019
Oil on Aluminium
26 x 31 cm
Overcoming Absence is a visual representation of my interest in the juxtaposition between interior and exterior spaces. I intended to present an unfixed narrative, that would reflect a multiplicity of voices from diverse points of view. The connection with memory and nostalgia is introduced by the presence of mundane autobiographical items, that saturate the muted colours of the room. I planned for the familiar to be infused with an outdoor landscape, in favour of the creation of a second memory. This approach was not entirely successful, albeit it advised the development of my collage and composition design. The composition illustrates the emergence of three figures, as prisoners of an individual fleeting moment of reminiscence. Photographs from my family album along with my own, have been utilised to design the composition for this piece, which was created with the intent to blend a family memory with a private one.
WHAT COLOUR IS NOSTALGIA 2018
Oil on Panel
20 x 12 cm
My research into the notion of nostalgia began with What colour is nostalgia, a series of paintings on wooden panels. The small scale of the work was intended to encourage intimate dialogues with the viewer. This series of oil paintings was designed to collect opinions and thoughts from the audience, in reference to the colours which would best portray the evanescent feeling of nostalgia. A family photograph taken in the streets of New York in 1920s was used as a reference, for the design of the compositions. The measurements of the panel correspond to those of a large-format old film photograph. The original photograph was digitally manipulated, due to the desire to include symbolic elements that would set apart the almost identical paintings. These emblematic elements allude at childhood games of a time passed; where personal narratives become figurative representations of universal experiences where the feeling of nostalgia is prevalent.