We meet again. This time we crack out the whiteboard function on Zoom and mind map our responses to Future Libraries and the ideas that came out of it. It looked like this:
The idea of making time tangible instantly caught our interest. Time is...slippery. How do we experience and capture time?
MAKING TIME TANGIBLE/VISIBLE
- Planting a seed now and documenting its growth throughout our process.
- Time-lapses of ourselves/capturing time moving around us.
- Giving materials from our process to the audience as a present.
- Making something to be preserved rather than consumed.
- Documentation/archive, this blog itself is a record of time passing.
- Using cassette tapes to record time. Passing them on. Recording over recordings.
- Finding old, used, undeveloped film and developing it.
- Using sun damaged film in photography, distorting them with a past light.
- Long exposure photography.
We talked about how there was something humbling about viewing yourself in the vastness of the universe. This is part of what makes Katie Paterson's work so effective - it connects you to unfathomable, somehow making the infinite intimate, the ephemeral tangible. As well as inspiring awe in the viewer, there's a feeling of melancholy brought on by her work. Like the aubituaries of all the dead stars, it captures not only the enormity of the universe, but its mortality too.
Melancholy, Shannon Freshwater
MELANCHOLY & NOSTALGIA
melancholy /ˈmɛlənkəli/ noun: melancholy
a feeling of pensive sadness, typically with no obvious cause. "an air of melancholy surrounded him"
Melancholy as a beautiful type of sadness, a romanticized misery. It sounds a bit like Tom Waits and Ella Fitzgerald, it looks like foggy cities and abandoned fairgrounds. It changes the lens with which we view the world. It shares a sense of longing with nostalgia. As a group, we were interested in the aesthetics of melancholy and nostalgia. Our desire to use film cameras and cassette tapes came from a longing for the tangible, materiality of the past. We want to know why we feel nostalgic of a past we never lived, why we feel connected to its objects. There's something sacred in a physical collection, whether its books, records or photographs, in how they're chosen, displayed, in the ritual of experiencing them.
nostalgia /nɒˈstaldʒə/ noun: nostalgia; plural noun: nostalgias
a sentimental longing or wistful affection for a period in the past.
WAYS OF MAKING
We don't know what form our work will take yet. For now, we want to set each other provocations for text, sound, images and videos. Every week, someone will edit the material to see how it's shaping, what patterns emerge. Every week we'll set new prompts. We'll do creative responses, to outside material and to each others. We'll capture our surroundings, document everything.
WAYS OF WORKING
We want to encourage sensitivity in the process. To show each other appreciation, and space to be wrong. Trying things out in a non-judgemental environment, and giving things time to develop. To be slow, to take time to reflect.