he myth of Persephone was what started my interest in doing a series based on Greek and Roman mythology. Throughout history, mythology and fairy tales have served as ways to teach, through the use of metaphor and allegory. Myths show us the strengths and weaknesses of human nature. With this series I am creating a visual mythology.

For my Persephone I selected one single image to work with. It is a nude floating in water—which spoke to me of dreams and the subconscious—and is the central figure on which the myth of Persephone was recreated. The images of flowers and sunsets that I used to express the dark underworld of Hades and her ascent upwards were chosen intuitively. I used the Daylab II to create multiple-slide exposures on Polaroid 669 film, and then scanned the negative wet. Since the results are always unpredictable, part of the process is watching and waiting to see what emerges from this “water world,” which is so befitting of Persephone.

"Persephone Rising" was selected as one of the winning entries in the prestigious Women in Photography International 20th Anniversary juried exhibition, which is slated to travel the world for the next 2 years. Slides from the show will be archived at Yale University in 2003. The exhibition debuts at the House of Photographic Art, 27182 Ortega Highway, San Juan Capistrano, California, October 10–November 15, 2001.

Olympus OM1 SLR, Canon EOS A2, Polaroid Daylab II,
Kodachrome 64, Fuji Provia, Polaroid 669,
wet paper negative print.

©2001 JOANNE WARFIELD

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