SHROUD (2011)

Death, romance and mystery were notions I aimed to embed within my own exploration of the shroud as it pertained to dissolvable fabrications.”

“The body was wrapped in a single piece of non-woven dissolvable fabric. The application of the fabric was simply to drape it over the head, masking the person underneath. In the Shroud process, water application was performed with a spray bottle. As learned from my experimentation, water would then slowly seep into the fibres, allowing a number of photographs to be captured before the garment entirely dissipated. Even with the use of the spray bottle, the dispersion of the water vapours was only partially controlled; meaning that only limited control over the dissolving was possible. In this way, it is impossible to dictate the exact outcome of the process, which in and of itself was synonymous with the processes of bodily decomposition, also largely out of our control.

As I gradually sprayed water over the model’s face, the dissipation of the fibres resembled a melting of frost, or if viewed in reverse, a covering with a white mould. With her face revealed, so too was her identity. The dissolution of the shroud not only referenced the uncovering of features but the dissolving of the ‘veil of secrecy’ regarding death through processes associated with death.

-[A]Dressing Death: Fashioning Garments for the Grave


Photography by Devika Bilimoria