April 2017 recently vacated room, asylum hostel, Voss. Photograph

recently vacated room, asylum hostel, Voss, 2017 


Even as my ideas about how I might understand the objects of my work, began to evolve, tentatively and speculatively over the early months of my research and even as new themes and preoccupations began to emerge, all implicit in my work at the time, the form of that work continued largely unchanged, despite an increasing pressure from within my research, for such change.


Familiar motifs continued to recur and perhaps most significantly my work remained rooted in the creation of images; representations pointing at instances of what fascinated me, without offering new ways in which to engage with those phenomena. 


I think there's an aesthetic refinement and a poignancy to many of these images. I was thinking a lot at the time about displacement and having just uprooted myself and moved to Norway (a country with which I was unfamiliar) it's hard to contemplate these images without seeing them at some level as autobiographical.

Their power seems to rest at least in part, in the interplay between the banality and the pathos of the objects they depict and titles like this one, which root the scenes we see evidentially or fictively within human(ist) narratives.


In this image as in others from my work, there is the invocation of an absent body through the affordances of the objects depicted; chairs, beds, pillows and at the same time the sense of the actual stillness of the photograph itself seems to mirror a quality of stasis or hiatus, which characterises the scene it shows the sense of circumstances depicted during an interval between the room's occupants' departure and return. Though again, this reading is undercut by the image's title, which suggests metonymically a transient relationship between occupant and site.