kapliczka pl. kapliczek : wayside shrine
etymology: Polish, diminutive of kaplica (chapel)
kapliczek (shrines) is an exploration of forgotten past in forgotten spaces.
The shrines are memorials paying silent and decaying tribute to a history I never witnessed, pieced together from books, photos, and anecdotes. It is not only the story of my changed and changing neighborhood, with its new faces, abandoned churches, and crumbling walls, but also the story of my Polish ancestors, whose history and identity are becoming lost with the passage of time and memory.
Through this piece, I search for my neighborhood's past and the influence it has on my identity as a transplant to Pittsburgh and a descendant of Polish immigrants. My hope is that others will visit the kapliczek and respond to the space, influenced by their own histories remembered and forgotten.