A Wall’s Wallet

Bespoke Letterpress Cases by Leo Benavides

A time capsule of your memories and keepsakes, safely encased in resin to be mounted up on your wall.

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Thing-power, mineral-clusters
Leo Dmb

Sunday lunches at my aunt's house were always underpinned by what her walls could offer. Anna’s oil pastel of decaying fruit, stages of egg yolks in different forms, a slick framed poster, 60s and bachelor-like, and a particular letterpress case tucked away in the downstairs toilet. The white case was medium size, and held inside collaged images of my three cousins, their faces morphing with age from one compartment to the next. I often think of this case, these artworks all together and what they said about the passing of time. This became a cornerstone in the way I began documenting pockets of memories. Creating familial relationships between inorganic matter, mudlark findings, mementos and found objects, all accumulated inside old letterpress cases.

These memories were awoken from my subconscious some ten years on, upon finding a beaten leather wallet on the 136 bus in Elephant and Castle. The wallet contained only an old blood-type card and a number of family ID pictures. Strong facial features laced through the three generations of ID photos. After failing to get through to the inactive numbers scribbled along with some Portuguese writing, I placed these pictures in resin and began to investigate the preservation of the traces memories leave behind. I hope now to expand into the archives and memories of others- creating heirlooms to be passed on, encapsulating objects that may otherwise be left untouched, collecting dust in an attic. 

Picture by Isabel MacCarthy