Our understanding of what constitutes place is coloured by emotion, and the memories attached to it. For this reason, a building, or a place, will persist in consciousness long after its physical counterpart has eased to exist. Place is as much a construct of the mind as it is a physical...Read More...
Our understanding of what constitutes place is coloured by emotion, and the memories attached to it. For this reason, a building, or a place, will persist in consciousness long after its physical counterpart has eased to exist. Place is as much a construct of the mind as it is a physical manifestation. The structures in which we live and work, and in which our experiences and feelings take place become imbed in our psyches, and establish a lasting impression. Memory is not the same as this; with memory, we can be subjective, or remember things that happened imperfectly. We weight memories with relevance and priority; they become nebulous and flexible. Memory is more a hybridization of experience and imagination. But conversely, the effect of memory upon our concept of place is far less mutable.
When I started this series of work, my intention was to venture beyond a more photographic representation; to work in a way that echoed the visceral nature of the concept of place, without defining a specific space. It seemed logical to me that the act of drawing, and the potential of the mark would accomplish that. Drawing the nest form was both an act of creating ambiguity and clarity, much like the clarity of the structure and the intangibility of memory and emotion.
The symbolic nature of the nest leads the viewer to an understanding of place, or shelter. At the same time, because of its indistinct nature it is an invitation to a more nuanced interpretation as the structure of the nest becomes distorted, and is pulled apart and examined. The goal is to allow the viewer to access feeling and emotion that emanates from the non-physical nature of place.
Often, there is conflict between the incorporeal and physical natures of place. We discover that our memories of it are subjective, and that our experience is dynamic; what we remember is either flawed, or, because of the nature of time and experiences, things have simply changed. For example, 'home' is a word charged with meaning. It transcends its physical nature and the time we spent in or at home influences the meaning of the word in a substantive, individual and subjective way. Home, as a concept, invokes so many other impressions (including childhood, family, friends, and shelter). It is a completely different experience for everyone. Experience changes as the conditions that originally informed the concept change. The movement, change and loss of people affect the perception of home in a marked way that can range from positive to negative. My recent work looks at the transformation of home. At times a comforting place, at times outgrown, or a dead house, missing those elements that made a house a home, the recent work examines this push pull between the relationship of the individual to the space of an imagined, metaphorical place. Memory and the physical spaces we inhabit create the place; as a nurturing shelter, or as something to escape.