CHRIS SCHNEBERGER // A Case of Levitation: The Story of Frances Naylor 

A Case of Levitation: The Story of Frances Naylor

My interest has long been in creating tableau images which imagine and investigate paranormal phenomena. My work has two significant components: the images themselves, and the installations when the work is exhibited. At their core, my images are about loneliness. My narratives deal with characters in personal isolation, yet seeking (and sometimes finding) metaphysical connections. The installations, on the other hand, present these narratives pseudo-historically, weaving together fact and fiction. I seek to blur the line between the two with supporting documents, both authentic and counterfeit. Writing plays a large part in my installations in the form of curatorial text, presenting (or misrepresenting) the images and ephemera to the audience. In doing so, I mean to question the role of the museum and curator in our perception of truth, and I allow the viewer, even momentarily, to accept the impossible. 

The Story of Frances Naylor tells of a girl who had lost her legs as a toddler due to a circulatory issue. When Frances was thirteen she began having intense dreams that she was able to walk. One morning, as she woke from such a vivid dream, Frances leapt out of bed and found that she was able to levitate. Though her mother would not allow Frances to levitate outside their home, her father recorded this phenomenon with his camera. This ability vanished in less than a month, and the photographs were buried in family archives.