Fehn Foss: What Did I Know?

Fehn Foss: What Did I Know?


What Did I Know

This work is a response to the last line of the poem Those Winter Sundays by American poet, Robert Hayden. Briefly, it is about a child whose home is fraught with the underlying angers of his parents and the child’s fear of his father. And yet looking back, the child notices the father’s actions as his own expression of love, albeit a troubled one. This poem looks life’s hardships right in the face and sees them fully. Those Winter Sundays is ripe with a child’s realization that love comes in many different forms and sometimes is seated directly beside anger: that a person can’t be dismissed as one thing. The images I made to sit with this line are segments from a single photograph of my extended family. I used these crops to abstract the individuals: I have mined the image for little moments of naivety and the ways in which children posture themselves—and how that changes as we age. The background for the triptych is black and spotlights the small ways in which we grow and move through the world.

- Fehn Foss

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“What Did I Know?” by Fehn Foss. A set of three images (8x8”), unframed.