Memory

Creating an investigation board from memories

 

 

 

 

 

 

Yael Moinester   |   April 2022

True or False?

Memory is illusive. The brain is not a reality recorder. It can distort and confuse, and more so with the passage of time.

False Memories

Elisabeth Loftus’s most famous study, “lost in the mall”, revealed that more than 25 percent of the participants’ studied, not only “remembered” implanted memories, but also filled in “missing details” of the invented event.

The Investigation board

The investigation board is a technology of truth in itself, serving a meta-investigative function by visually rendering a theory of causality, association, and guilt.

The investigation board

Description of the crime
Victim  |  Witnesses  |  Suspects
Time  |  Crime scene location 
Evidence  |  Weapon
Connections

Description of the crime

How to rewrite the memory.
Tell your story. Your truth. Your testimony.

Forensic documents

Using forensic documents and forms as the means of telling the story. The remembered story.

Evidence

I collected made-up and fantasized evidence that if had been found, would have incriminated my big sister and found her guilty of her ‘crimes’.

The weapon: Laughter

The traumatic memory includes aspects of ridicule and laughter and incorporates the confusing perception of reality and falsehood. The mouth and teeth became part s of the weapon.

The weapon: Laughter

The traumatic memory includes aspects of ridicule and laughter and incorporates the confusing perception of reality and falsehood. The mouth and teeth became part of the weapon.

Facial composite

My memory of my sister.
The way she looked then. 38 years ago…
A facial composite created from memory using FACES.

Facial composite

My memory of my sister.
The way she looked then. 38 years ago…
A facial composite created from memory using FACES.

The End.

Ways to Remember

Using facial composite methods to reconstruct a memory

 

 

Yael Moinester | August 2021

I was there. I saw it. Felt it. Smelt it.
I was there. All my being. My entirety.
I was there. In a specific moment. A specific time. A specific place.
Now what’s left?
The memory.

 

It’s strange. Something that happened in real life is encoded, stored in your brain, and then retrieved, visualized, imagined. A reenactment of what happened, in your mind. You can really see it, feel it, sometimes even smell it. But it’s not real. It’s not there anymore. It’s a memory. Rebuilt. Rewinded and played back in your head. No one can see it but you. It’s yours now. Your private recorder and your private projector.

 

If memories are reenactments,
facial composites are reenactments of memories,
and my entire project is like a giant facial composite.
Rebuilding a face feature by feature.
Rebuilding a memory piece by piece.

Remembering in words

How can you verbalize a memory? Verbalizing not the event itself, but its’ memory. Scribbled words on a tiny post it. “Gigantic forehead… perfect teeth… beautiful smile…”. Words that describe my sister. My memory of my sister. The way she looked then. 38 years ago… Descriptions, words, looped and repeated over and over again. A verbalized facial composite. On a post it.

 

Remembering in layers

Can you take all the layers of your memory and assemble them together? Are they stored in your brain in separate layers? 500 transparent layers in a box. 500 Illustrated facial features. Eyes, noses, mouths, chins, and hairs layered one on top of the other to create a face. To create a memory.

 

The Identi-Kit System developed by Hugh MacDonald, Los Angeles, 1959.

Remembering in fragments

Narrow strips of photographed facial features combined together strip by strip. How can you remember in strips? You have to dissect the face into little pieces. Describe every piece separately. And somehow all the pieces are supposed to fit together and become a whole. Become the memory. Memory doesn’t really work that way…

 

The Photo-Fit System invented by Jacques Penry, 1968

 

Remembering in a click

Sometimes you suddenly remember. Something clicked in your brain. The memory was turned on. Out of nowhere. One of the first digital softwares that enabled selecting each facial feature separately and developing a photo-like suspect composite instantly. Combining all the facial parts and creating a human in just a few clicks. The process is extremely fulfilling.

 

The Faces software, developed by Adrian Paterson, 1986

Remembering in color

Memories can be so vivid. So real. As if you’re suddenly back there, in the moment again. These facial composites are so real looking that they include a warning label: This is not a photograph. This is not real. Be careful what you remember…

 

The E-FIT and EFIT-V Software (Electronic Facial Identification Technique), Launched initially by John Platten, U.K., 1988. Refined by Dr Matthew Maylin, Aspley Ltd.

 

Remembering as a whole

Do you remember individual features of a face? of a memory? Can you combine features together into a whole. Human beings don’t work that way. We remember faces as a whole. Everything mixed up together. Not as separated elements. This system lets you select a group of similar faces that are then morphed together and animated until the final face is detected. Keeping the memory as a whole.

 

EvoFIT developed jointly by the University of Central Lancashire and the University of Stirling, 2001.

 

 

My own memory

I’m not a Reality-Recorder. I assemble reality from details. Bits and pieces of experiences that I try to combine into a consistent narrative. My way of remembering is by collecting all these pieces together. Different kinds of pieces. Feelings, objects, elements, that were all scrambled in the brain, and are now meticulously organized as a facial composite or as an investigation board. I reconstructed my sister’s face, my memory of my sister’s face using the fragmented method background but with the digital means we live in today. A mix between the past and present. Between the old and new. The now and then.
Just like a memory.

 

The end.