Digging into the archive was like falling down a rabbit hole. It opened up all possibility in my mind and I saw how all these different kinds of materials worked together to tell a story in a different way and how they related back to what I was doing. And it didn’t matter that these things were produced by different sources, were in different formats, or were from different times. I had to let go of the (my) old way of thinking about photographic documentation, truth, and representation. Everything became the archive, everything became documentation, suddenly it all seemed very fluid. And the only thing that mattered anymore was telling a story visually using my research and calling on my imagination whenever it was needed.
And so over the course of these five years, the story began to disintegrate and fragment and fall away. It never disappeared completely, it was always there, like some kind of floating ghost. But its sole function for me was to serve as a source. Ultimately, I wanted the work to act as a more complex, enigmatic, visual crime dossier, a mixed collection of cryptic clues, random facts and fictions that the viewer had to deal with on their own. – Christian Patterson