"If I Forget, I Won't Remember" delves into the dynamic nature of memory, challenging the notion of fixed recollections and embracing the cyclical dance of forgetting and reshaping. As time erodes details, narratives shift, and our past morphs into a tapestry woven from truth and distortion. These evolving memories, however, are inseparable from our sense of self; forgetting threatens to unravel the very fabric of our identity.
The video explores this precarious relationship through the lens of the Brown Hosey family and their ancestral home, the Garcitas Community. Here, visits serve as rituals of remembrance, reconnecting with the threads of history woven into their family tapestry. Through this personal narrative, the film illuminates the universal struggle to preserve memories against the relentless tide of time, while grappling with the fragmented nature of recollection and the subsequent reconstruction of personal narratives. To capture the subjective and fragmented essence of memory, the video employs unconventional storytelling techniques. Non-linear narratives, dreamlike imagery, and even the reversal of time itself, transport viewers beyond the confines of traditional storytelling.
The central image of the sun-dappled path, its ancient oak guardians shielding a journey into the past, embodies this unconventional approach. This verdant passage leads to the heart of the Garcitas Community, a testament to Black resilience and a potent symbol of ancestral memory. The community itself, rooted in the pre- and post-slavery era, offers a microcosm of Black history. The presence of Mt. Pisgah Church, the Hudler School for Coloreds, and the Garcitas Cemetery – all staples of freedmen communities – underscores the enduring legacy of struggle and hope. Each structure whispers stories of generations past, their bricks and stones resonating with the echoes of ancestors. Ultimately, "If I Forget, I Won't Remember" is a poignant exploration of the intricate relationship between memory and identity. By embracing the complexities of forgetting and reconstruction, the video invites viewers to contemplate the ever-shifting sands of selfhood and the enduring power of familial and ancestral connections in anchoring us in the ever-changing currents of time.