So I was happily getting ready to finish for the night. Final project post written. Thought I would have a quick check over what I had covered in the last couple of weeks when I see that the post VERBAL FORM SOUND IMAGE from 2 weeks ago has lost all it’s text! I open and close the browser, sign in and out of wordpress a couple of times, re-start my computer. Still nothing.
Ugh. In case that post hasn’t been looked at already I’m going to attempt to re-cap what I think I may have re-capping at the time. I have no idea why that text has dissapeared and I am certain it was there a couple of days ago.
That particular post was written a few days after loosing all of my digital work from the last three years after my external hard drive unexpectedly died. All video work is gone and all sound recording and edits. This left me trying to re-make exhibition work with a looming deadline (and now i’m re-telling the same events the night before the deadline – what fun) but didn’t leave me enough time to re-make work that wasn’t intended for exhibition.
I expect that post was outlining my project so that’s what I’ll do here, again.
The end of Neg 1 left me with a few different paths to go down. I had explored rhythm – in nature and in technology – with a particular interest in sound and it’s ability to effect the atmosphere of place. Rhythm was also explored in object making, trying to apply rhythm to objects through repetition. It had also been chance to work with casting and mould making, something I see as an extention of all sorts of copies – tracing, printing, photocopies, and even video and sound recording, and process I find really interesting. I had initially intended to continue down this route, simply developing that body of work. But other things cropped up in which I saw a different way to explore similar ideas, but has also drawn me closer to dissertation research.
This research was generally focused on so much digital work, and much of it was done online, I found myself craving something more tactile and hands on and so i knew I would continue with casting and objects. But that dgital aspect was also important – the ephemeral and unstable, or hard to grasp and fleeting.
That aspect – copies, repetition – has carried through my research for this project. One catalyst for the particular form the work in neg 2 has taken was the project done with Mostyn Glitch collective, Question Spaces a couple of months ago. I was working with sound recordings of voices. I loved this, it was more absorbing than I realised it would be and provided me with a way to work with something bodily – the voice, so dependent and affected by the body ot comes from – but also something formless, weightless, and ephemeral – sound.
Sound had already been of interest, particularly after work I had seen at the end of last year but I hadn’t really considered working with voices. Similarly I rarely photograph people – I’m more interested in stuff and spaces – but I wase excited after the Glich project to work with voice as human and relatable material.
Digtal sources of information while potentially fragmentary and unreliable comes at us from all angles, in all forms, and I sometimes feel it leaves little room for the mind to wander. For this reason I decided to use existing written works of fiction as my source. Writing delivers so much rich imagery and atmosphere and pace and meaning and we do so much of the work in our minds. This idea of the mind’s eye and it’s amazing ability to deal with so much information, suggestion, stimulus is central to the work.
The works fiction I have borrowed from are: Kafka on the Shore by Haruki Murkami, The Diving Pool by Yoko Ogawa, The Guest Cat by Takashi Hiraide, and The Vegetarian by Han Kang (which just happened to win the Man Booker prize, and is AMAZING). The books have nothing in common really although all the authors are East Asian, and I wondered if what I percieve to be a small common thread running through them, in terms of style, is due to that – a cultural similarity perhaps – or due something that happens in translation??? The style I percieve is all about clarity, directness, and a certain minimalism.
I have selected descriptive senteces from each, read them aloud recording my voice and two other voices. These are recorded a few times. Voices mix and scramble and eventually senteces scramble too. New meaning emerge, and with that new images. This re-creation of images is then carried through in objects and video and print.
I think and hope this has covered what has mysteriously disppeared?!
Here is the one thing not lost in the hard drive disaster as I had already uploaded onto sound cloud – a short draft of one the sentences…
And finally the senteces, which I don’t think I have previously written up on here:
Quick, quicker… The hand holding the knife was working so quickly, I felt the heat prickle the back of my neck. My hand, the chopping board, the meat, and then the knife, slicing cold into my finger.
Her finger nails have become as thin as paper.
It was wound so tightly that it hurt the tips of her fingers, but she continued patiently until the final knot was untied.
First I pinned the seams, and then I would carefully sew the piece to the quilt. I became so absorbed in simply adding one patch to the next that I sometimes forgot what I was making. Then I would spread out the pattern and remind myself that I was working on a quilt or a wall hanging or whatever – before returning to the pattern.
I looked at my hand holding the needle, and I thought of the managers beautiful foot. I thought of the phantom hands that had disappeared to some unknown place.
The light in the kitchen illuminated the grainy pattern of the fruit. The grapefruit became even shinier when the I had sprinkled on them dissolved.
At first it looked like low lying ribbons of clouds just floating there, but then the clouds would be blown a little bit to the right and next to the left.
Oshima holds his pencil between his middle and index fingers, twirling it ever so slightly as if testing the balance.
When I open them, most of the books have the smell of an earlier time leaking out from between their pages – a special odour of the knowledge and emotions that for centuries have been calmly resting between the covers.