I recently came across an old journal of mine and spent the entire day pouring over it, fascinated. I remembered writing the words - I occupied the same physical space, shared the same bones - but the person who spoke them was a complete stranger. It’s amazing how continuous our experience of being feels, while every day is a constant process of changing; a scene, a movement, a thought - each moment leaves behind the person we were without it.
Photographer Bobby Neel Adams captures the raw physicality of this change in his project, Age Maps. He performs what he calls “photo-surgery,” a montage technique in which he merges a subject’s childhood photo with the adult self, “telescoping the slow process of aging into a single picture.” Preferring to avoid digital editing, Adams develops each photo to the same scale and then, simply tearing them, combines them as one:
“The point at which the images are physically torn together becomes the boundary… between decades of passing time.”