I was at the Helene Center for the Visual Arts (Graceland University, Lamoni Iowa) documenting the latest art exhibit by Julia (Tucker) Franklin. At the exhibit you enter the rooms of her childhood home in Wichita Falls, Texas. Little by little the story is revealed. The brick in a desk drawer with the death threat. The police report. The suicide note in the clipboard on top of the desk.
When Julia Tucker was 16, her father, Johnie Tucker, committed suicide, devastating the family.
Years later when her mother died, Julia was given a box of belongings that revealed secrets about her father’s death that her mother had kept for years. As a way of sorting out her thoughts and feelings, “picking up the pieces” is how Julia Franklin used that box of belongings and a bunch of found period items to recreate the rooms of her childhood home. It is a remarkable exhibit.
I was at the opening of the exhibit January 25, and I went back February 3 and 8 to document the exhibit in detail.
The photo of her father’s desk with the suicide note is my favorite of the images I created February 3, although “favorite” doesn’t seem to be quite the right word. Perhaps I should say this is the image that haunts me the most. My second favorite image of the day is the cufflinks. At a later date I will post more images from this exhibit.
Julia Franklin will be doing an artist’s talk February 18 at noon to talk about the exhibit and the items in the box of her father’s belongings. If you will be anywhere near Lamoni Iowa, February 18, drop by at noon.
UPDATE, February 18: The artist talk has been moved to Carol Hall in the Shaw Center.
“Picking Up the Pieces” will be on exhibit at the Helene Center on the Graceland campus through March 1, 2019.
Series: Favorite Photos by Date – all about this series