Winners 2022 > Federica Armstrong

Federica Armstrong

the dowry

The Dowry explores my family’s photo archive. it’s an examination of memories, family connections and the role we hold as witness to our past. In Italy, the tradition of the dowry refers to the practice of giving daughters linen and other household textiles when they get married.

In the project The Dowry, images of my family are transferred to vintage textiles through cyanotype process and toning. Through this alchemy, the fabrics once used in the course of family life acquire new meaning. 

Blending the materiality of the fabric with the ephemeral nature of memory, the dowry becomes the final inheritance after my parent’s passing: a cathartic process of mourning, remembrance, and consolation.

About the artist:

Federica Armstrong is a visual artist born in Italy and based in Palo Alto (California). Her art practice includes documentary and fine art works. Armstrong’s images have been exhibited in venues in the US and Europe, her work has been featured on the New York Times Lens Blog, in several books and is part of the Harvard Art Museum permanent collection.

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