In the last twenty years or so American cemeteries have become increasingly sterile. Efficiency of mowing has become more important than expressions of grief and remembrance as families are prohibited from planting flowers or leaving mementos. Many cemeteries don’t even allow vertical headstones anymore.

European cemeteries don’t seem to suffer from this condition. They are cacophonies of cut flowers, plants, paintings, sculptures, and keepsakes. They are often jumbles of the real and artificial, living and dead, plastic and silk, new and old. They are the complicated expressions of grief-stricken survivors. These tangled displays become impromptu still lifes. The complexity of the colors, textures, forms, and surfaces may reflect the complexity of the lives they serve to celebrate. “Nous Nous Souvenons (We Remember)” is a collection of photographs from cemeteries across Europe. It’s an examination of ritual memorials in different cultures and attempts to find beauty in sadness.—Forest McMullin


Forest McMullin is a freelance photographer and photographic educator based in Atlanta, GA. He specializes in photographing fringe social groups and is respected for his ability to bring out their dignity while still showing them with directness and honesty. His photographs have been exhibited across the United States as well as in Paris and Beijing. His work is found in numerous public and private collections. Currently he is a full time Professor of Photography at the Savannah College of Art and Design’s Atlanta campus and delivers lectures and workshops around the US. In addition to teaching, he shoots his own work and consults. His consultations include portfolio development, marketing strategies, business planning, and equipment and technical advice. He works with individuals, businesses, and industry leaders.