Shadow Dial Study III, Room Beside the Chapel, St Erme, France
Light, Line & Lore
HD Video Projection; Omagh, 2014
First shown at Night Contact 2014 during Brighton Photo Biennial as part of Esther Teichmann’s slideshow. Each slideshow wqs a visual representation and interpretation of the curator’s original text. The project will explore the ambiguity of the image, how meaning can be constructed through a layer of participants, and the active role of the viewer.
Esther has selected the following text for artist/photographers to respond to: “As he swam , he pursued a sort of reverie in which he confused himself with the sea. The intoxication of leaving himself, of slipping into the void, of dispersing himself in the thought of water, made him forget every discomfort.” Maurice Blanchot, Thomas the Obscure, translated by Robert Lamberton, New York: Station Hill Press, 1973 (1941).
“The quote is from one of my favorite novels, Thomas the Obscure by Maurice Blanchot. This passage describes Thomas being penetrated by the sea as he swims inside her, losing all sense of self and separateness. It reminds me of the act of taking an image – of becoming one with that before you, which consumes and fascinates.” Esther Teichmann
Fairies have long been a subject for photography since it’s inception, with Fox Talbot describing his early photographs as ‘fairy pictures’. There is a strong link between shadows and fairies, both are impossible to capture and they are ciphers for ideas about transgression, liminal states, the intangible. Within the tradition of fairy folklore is a strong preoccupation with boundaries between one world and the other. As my work considers the line between shadow and light, a line difficult to trace and identify I am considering the mystery of this ‘non area’, and relating it to the photographic latent image, the undeveloped area of light caught between times of capture in the darkroom. The work is being made with reference to Derrida in ‘Athens Still Remains’, this book is short and questions whether the boundary between light and shadow constitutes a line, this meditation is the conceptual origin for Light Line and Lore. The site of the bush determines where this line will be, as it was ‘borne from a seed that was never planted’, mythically , it has no known referent. In Light Line and Lore I am working along this metaphorical resonance with the loss of indexicality, exploring how verbal histories, folklore and legends are stored in the memory and age with the ebb and flow of the memory keeper.