White Mountain, 2008/2020

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I found the 13th century Matosavank  monastery in Armenia by accident.  I was very impressed by the lonely ruined remains of a very great and mystic architecture. Its architecture differs from the other monasteries I photographed before.       

The passing of time destroyed the glass window in the monastery’s roof. Snow falls into the sacred space, forming a small white monticule on the ground like a small white mountain .  Sunlight illuminates a grave in the dark room next to the entrance.

During my photographic work I observed that the graves in the ancient monasteries pointed in the same direction. An Armenian priest told me that their dead are buried facing the direction of Mount Ararat.

I have finally found a way to connect both works and combine them in a photographic sequence. It was not until I succeeded to enlarge the photographic negatives of Mount Ararat, which I believed to be damaged beyond repair. The original 6×6 format turned landscape and found its place in the monastery sequence.

-Urusula Schulz-Dornburg, 2020