World War I Centenary is reminding the all world the “savage butchery of millions” The Battle of Verdun was fought 1916, and it was one of the largest battles of the First World War. According to recent estimates the number of casualties increased to 976,000, with 1,250,000 suffered at Verdun from 1914 to 1918. The Battle of Verdun lasted for 303 days and became the longest and one of the most costly battles in human history.
Melanie-Jane Frey photographs commemorate the events and the casualties by visiting the haunted places of this very symbolic battlefield. Her pictures are a perception of the palpable presence of dramatic and heroic experiences of many men who never returned home. Melanie-Jane pilgrimage is a mystical one. Her vision seemed to look for lost souls on an etheric plan, remaining prints of the lives that has been crushed on those grounds.
Emotions are not to be hidden, risking of burying with its the memory of the dead.
Into the vision of the artist, blur and a dark black and white esthetic are deliberatly used to fulfill a wish to stick to Verdun’s heavy atmospher. This land seems to be now and forever consacrated outside space and time, forever haunted by a too big number of souls, forever a revolting symbol of madness. This work is a tribute to our ancestors gone missing during this terrible war.
Verdun in Memoriam part II - ambrotypes and tintypes Wet Plate Collodion Installation on wood