Possessed by the Past by Clarence John Laughlin (1939)

The photograph titled “Possessed by the Past” was created by artist Clarence John Laughlin in the year 1939. This black and white image features a peculiar composition, where a male figure is seated and slightly off-center in front of a framed piece of lace that is hung on the wall. The lace is positioned in such a way that it appears as an exaggerated or ghostly headpiece behind the man. The man wears glasses, a collared shirt, and appears to be in mid-gesture, with one hand near his mouth as if deep in thought or perhaps biting his finger, adding to the surreal quality of the image. The play of light and shadow, alongside the textured elements like the lace, imbues the scene with an air of mystery and introspection, reflective of Laughlin’s interest in the surreal and the psychological depths of the past.

Other Photographs from Clarence John Laughlin

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