Estate Sales: Everything Must Go
by Danielle Aseff
This documentary series deals with the practice of estate sales and the complex emotions that accompany them. There is a strange juxtaposition between the justifiably emotional family members and the intent to imitate a retail store complete with helpful “salespeople”, colorful price tags and items displayed on tables to sell. Walking through a home and appraising a lifetime of accumulation, you can almost feel the person there – an incorporeal commercial presence. A lifetime of hard work and sacrifice was required to purchase these goods, now offered for sale at bargain prices. The old photographs, memorabilia, clothing and books are a window into a life – markers of economic status, cultural affiliations and personal idiosyncrasies. At these sales one can’t help but form an image of the person whose home has been converted into a temporary store. Even in death, a consumer’s vision of what they wanted from life is evident in the items left behind.