How have you been cleansed? How have you been physically cleansed? What do you do, where do you go to feel weightless? What is your relationship with water? Four questions. Four questions I have asked myself again and again to the point where I can’t hold them in any more. Four questions I started asking individuals from various walks of life. Four questions that cascaded into interviews with people I know but don’t fully ‘know’, in fact becoming a cleansing experience in and of itself.
Cleansed by is a thesis featuring work in print, photo, and piano that explores the relationship between self, the divine, and one’s definition of being cleansed. This project was created out of the necessity to dive deeper into what it means when we experience a "cleansing" and the different interpretations ( literal, spiritual, metaphorical ) we associate with that experience. Volume One marks the end of my undergraduate studies at George Fox University, with the majority of interviewees being students and recent graduates.
The final publication includes interviews with nineteen individuals, eleven of which received photo shoots and gave personal reflections on their experience. Along with the final product being in print form, an exhibition was presented on 17 April 2017 to showcase the series as well as original piano compositions to accompany. You can experience the show ( above ) or watch directly on Vimeo, as well as listen to the piano compositions on SoundCloud.
Lauren Parker Johnson
James Fitzgerald III
An Ongoing Thesis
My hope is to continue interviewing people on the subject of 'cleansing' for many years to come. If you are interested in being a part of the project in any way please don't hesitate to write me, as I would be happy to hear your thoughts, critiques, and ultimately your response to the four questions I have posed. I encourage you to let the idea of cleansing permeate in your thoughts throughout the day, as I have found it of utmost importance to reflect on.