Message from Saint Veronica / L'ubo Stacho




fabric, clothes line, clothes pins, transferred photocopies

Stacho was inspired by the legend of Veronica's Veil, on which the face of Jesus is believed to be imprinted. He wanted to achieve the same kind of energy transmission, from face to fabric, to make energy visible in his installation. He photographed a cross section of about 200 people he met in downtown Pittsburgh, requesting each person who agreed to pose for two photos, one with eyes open and a second with eyes closed. He then photocopied each of the portraits, and photocopied each photocopy, and so on, until he had a 4th- or 5th-generation print. Each print, faint and indistinct enough to have a mystical quality, was transferred to fabric with a solvent of lacquer thinner. Dressed in white, Stacho dipped each fabric image into water in the Mattress Factory garden -- a process which could be seen as a uniting of all humanity but which unmistakably also suggests baptism. The faint portraits queue up on laundry lines in the fourth floor gallery.
Artist Statement
Spirit, Secret, Mystery, Religion. These are things in which I am interested; what is inside. I like to balance on the edge. Where is irony, where is truth? I baptized 200 Americans in my mind. The shroud of Turin is a print from Christ’s face, a photograph is a print from the light. In both cases it is energy transmission. I am interested in this transmission.
October 29, 1995 – July 31, 1996
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