CHOCOLATE DARK
2016

Throughout history, women's appetites have been censored, our hunger checked.
I have always been interested in the things we hide, the uncomfortable secrets.
I wanted to make the darkness visible.

Gallery on the Walk Install.jpg

The Sweet History of Chocolate

The history of chocolate begins in Mesoamerica.  Fermented beverages made
from chocolate date back to 1900 BC.  The Aztecs believed that cacao seeds were the gift
of Quetzalcoatl, the god of wisdom and self-reflection, and the seeds had so much value that they were
used as a form of currency. Originally prepared only as a drink, chocolate was served as a bitter, frothy liquid
mixed with spices or corn puree.  It was believed to have aphrodisiac powers and to give the drinker strength.

 

CHOCOLATE DARK

On dark velvet, I photographed blocks of chocolate.  In shades of chestnut, tan, and golden brown, the shadows turned luminous.

I started collecting blocks of chocolate in 2000.  For two years they were one third of a collection that included baker's chocolate,
hair that fell from my head, and dryer lint.  I recorded the growing collections as they accumulated, an opportunity to make images while
my three young children slept.  Symbolic of my daily life, the hair was a metaphor for aging, the lint from my children's clothing was about
family and the chocolate referenced my often-forgotten desires.  As markers of time they recalled what fell away and what was gained.
Seventeen years later, I am revisiting these collections.  In this series,
I focus on the chocolate.  Enigmatic and mysterious,
the structures now glow, distinct and vibrant.

See also 'Chocolate, Hair and Lint'
http://www.lydiapanas.com/conceptual-work/

All photographs in this series available as 30 x 30"  signed, limited edition prints.


WHITE   2014 - (in progress)

FABRIC (SQUARES)  2013

TURKISH SLIPPER    2016 - (in progress)