This is my first blog post about my research project ‘Looking for the Matriarchive‘. I am the University of Brighton/V&A Research Fellow for 2019/2020 and here is a little bit more about me and my fellowship project:
Rachel Maloney is the Victoria and Albert Museum Research Exchange Fellow for this academic year. She currently works as a Technical Demonstrator in Photography at the University of Brighton after gaining her MA in Photography in 2015. Rachel is an artist and researcher whose work currently focuses on memory and personal narrative within family photographs.
Her most recent body of work Pressed (2019) was an installation piece focused on a collection of items that belonged to her maternal Grandmother, including a flower press they made together. The work was created using flowers and leaves from the flower press, instead of photographic negatives, to create a series of colour darkroom prints. The installation of a darkroom and working enlarger within the gallery space mirrored both the environment and intimate process used to create the work. The piece was an insight into personal memory and a family archive.
Rachel’s current research project ‘Looking for the Matriarchive’ is focused on uncovering the female narrative of materials held in the V&A’s Royal Photographic Society collection. Initially looking at the mysterious “Mary” whose name is inscribed on the cover of a highly decorated Victorian album comprised of family photographs collaged with hand–painted flowers, birds, insects, and butterflies. Rachel will also carry out practice–led research engaging a public audience to inform the narrative and outcome of this project. Including running workshops that invite members of the public to share and discuss their own personal family photographs.
Please keep keep your eyes peeled for more blog posts as this project progresses! Thank you 🙂