Soldiers who return from war find themselves at a personal crossroads—their internal compass confounded by the search for normality after experiencing the surrealism of war. Once home, they often aspire to be back with fellow soldiers doing something of consequence. At the same time, they experience strong feelings of obligation/desire to be home with their families and loved ones. The end result is a sense of existing in an ‘other’ world, somewhere in between their experience as a soldier and their desire to return to their old reality. The formal black and white portraits of active-duty soldiers and veterans hint at the act of camouflage as a means or result of obscuring things. The aim is also to elucidate the experience that soldiers who have served during wartime face. Inherent within this experience is the intimate exploration of what it means to feel disconnected from one’s former self after experiencing war. This is not the case for all, but it certainly is for many. Soldiers return not only with visible wounds, but also those that remain largely concealed: post-traumatic stress disorder, traumatic brain injury, and major depression are the most common. Also, there is what the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs refers to as ‘moral injury.’ My brother went to war. He was an Apache helicopter pilot.
Teri Fullerton completed a Master in Fine Arts, from the Minneapolis College of Art and Design, a Master of Education at Portland State University, and a Bachelor of Social Work from California State University Sacramento. She currently holds the position of Lecturer at the University of Colorado, Denver and was previously an Assistant Professor at the University of Minnesota, Minneapolis. Her work has been exhibited in solo and group exhibitions across the United States and internationally.
Terri examines idiosyncratic topics, ranging from Internet dating to the connection between awe and the sublime. ‘Awe’ is described as that often-positive feeling of being in the presence of something vast that transcends our understanding of the world. There is also a belief that we are currently experiencing awe deprivation due to factors such as less exposure to nature. Other topics of research include military families, soldiers that have gone to war, and the actions of camouflage.