North South East West series centers on Walter Benjamin’s ideas raised about portrait photography and the vestige of the aura. As I researched the historical record, I discovered that there were, indeed, soldiers of Asian descent in the both the armies of the North and South. I realized that once again people of various racial backgrounds had been systematically excluded from the national record, even by recent revisionist histories.
The costumes they wear are rented from the oldest Hollywood collection house, Western Costume. Western Costume’s collection dates back to 1912 (the beginning of cinematic history) and includes Civil War uniforms used in D.W. Griffith’s infamous film, Birth of A Nation.