The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston has acquired DNA #8232L – #8236R, 2019 by Michael Koerner!
Michael Koerner is the oldest of five brothers. Due to genetic abnormalities and cancer, he is the only remaining living son. His brothers’ fates (and potentially his own one day) can be linked to their mother, who was eleven years old on August 9, 1945 when the atomic bomb was dropped on Nagasaki. She lived in Sasebo, Japan, 45 miles away from the blast. The long-term effects of severe, acute exposure to gamma radiation led to his mother’s death at an early age, and all of his brothers. Koerner’s work explores his family history and genetics through small tintypes, using photographic chemistry to assimilate the bursts and biochemical fallout from the atom bomb.
I remain hyper-vigilant towards my own cancer diagnosis and exhibit my own feelings of survivor’s guilt. These feelings and family history and experiences drive my artistic hand.