contemporary art Country DH Dowling fine art Hans Verduin sculpture USA



// DH is a New England (Connecticut) based writer and photographer. When he is out shooting, he looks for ghosts hidden in plain sight. Ideas are more important than lenses. We present a set of his photos of mysterious graveyard sculptures.

He designs and develops book covers, logos, and online magazines. He has also directed TV commercials and long-form media for New York and Los Angeles production companies, including Warner Brothers, Saucony and Reebok. His work has garnered Telly awards, a Mobius award, a Mercury Award, New York Festival Awards, Monitor Awards, ITVA awards, and Society of Technical Communicators Awards of Distinction. He has been editor-in-chief of Mental Shoes magazine, and curated the international group exhibition “Destinesia” in Brooklyn, New York. His photography has been published in various magazines and exhibited in galleries.

“Intellect confuses intuition. ”

Piet Mondrian

What draws you to the arts?

“I grew-up in a perilously small house in the suburbs of Boston, Massachusetts. My mother and father were painters. My dad could not afford a studio so he painted in the kitchen, often with Bartok or Beethoven blaring, and while meals were being prepared. My parents habitually discussed light and likeness, color and composition. At an early age I learned to observe the world around me with a thinking eye, and developed a deep and abiding respect for artists.”

What do you like about your graveyard sculpture series?

“I enjoy photographing funerary art in old New England graveyards.  Memorials to the dead.  Close-ups of neoclassical stone figures.  Faces of angels.  Carved from slate and sandstone, marble, bronze or granite, splashed with moss, algae, fungi, and lichen.  Exquisite sculptures in states of decay.  I have photographed them headless, armless, noseless; smothered by vines so tightly their faces are cracked; warped by old, gnarled trees.  Death’s heads, stylized skulls with wings and crossed bones.  Angels of grief, brandishing swords.  They are all sculpted by unknown artists, long dead and now lost in time.  The world has forgotten these cemetery angels.  You can see it in their eyes.  The power of photography is that I won’t let you forget them.”

DH has shared a series of mysterious seeming, darkly moody photographs taken at graveyards. There are a lot of emotions associated with graveyards, they can be places of sadness, but also of beauty. What they make eminently clear to the person walking through is the transience of life. Even a long human life is short, in the big schemed of things. There is a certain sadness associated with this realisation, and this is often reflected in the faces of statues that “guard” graves of loved ones.

The photos DH has shared reflect this mood, they speak of times gone by, of lives lived, loved, lost. Life though, is beautiful, and this too may be seen in the sad eyes of these “angels of grief”, who seem to be dreaming of other places, of memories, or perhaps of future possibilities.

DH says, “I am not obsessed with beauty. Beauty isn’t art. Art makes us see. I flow with my intuition. I wade into this river willingly. The water knows more than I know. The current is strong. It is always a struggle, and feels beautiful in retrospect.”                     

Images may be cropped for layout. Click on the photos to see the full image.


To see more of his photography visit DH´s Instagram page.