here now, there then: re-reading my honours thesis 'To Be Locatable'

‘The moment captured in the image is over near zero duration and located in an ever receding “then”. At the same time the spectator’s “now”, the moment of looking at an image, has no fixed duration’. Peter Wollen

 Craigardan, Keene, NY, 2018

Craigardan, Keene, NY, 2018

I am currently living in Keene in upstate New York undertaking a residency at Craigardan, a multidisciplinary arts residency combining studio, culinary, agricultural and intellectual arts. It is a beautiful and secluded farm in the Adirondacks, an area that spans more than six million acres. I feel as though I have never experienced a more isolated existence, its deafeningly quiet and life is simple . I am here as the culinary artist in residence but also have time and space to revisit my practice as a photographic artist. The silence and solitude has inspired me to turn the camera on myself once again, and to the rituals and motions that fill the everyday. I felt it was important to read my past writings on this subject - to look back in order to move forward. Here is an excerpt from my Honours Thesis, ‘To be Locatable’ , written ten years ago.

“My own exploration of self-portraiture has forced me to ponder my existence in the present, past and future. When I look into the camera I look to the future, a future that will in turn (photographically) look to the past. I stage photographs of things in front of the camera that I do not have, such as the future, to bring time closer to me, to create a moment with the intention of looking back later. I do not know what is going to happen in the future, how the relationships of my life are going to end. For me the camera is a vehicle for time travel. My self-portraits are a stand in for what I don’t have, that is, my own death.” 

 Narwee, 2004, c-type photograph

Narwee, 2004, c-type photograph

 Lewisham, 2005, gelatin silver print

Lewisham, 2005, gelatin silver print

 Sydney College of the Arts, 2006, gelatin silver print

Sydney College of the Arts, 2006, gelatin silver print