Collaboration, The Dolphin Gallery, St. John's College, Oxford, UK
"...his button is not him. Yet that circular piece of plastic, smooth underneath, ridged on the outside and neatly hole-punched picks up the mind, dragging it on a journey through those suppressed past presences. By nature, by defence the memory that emerges is not a replica, a factual recollection of time, within its own time space but an edited, tidied, diluted version. It is perhaps clever how the mind forgets some things and holds others so close. Years of prolonged pain or of timeless uncertainty pass through the mind. Edit themselves and are recalled as the touch of a button, smooth on one side and ridged on its other which caught your attention once when you realised you were happy.
The art of memory can also be about forgetting".
1,237 fragments and traces of memory were collected throughout one month. After developing a number system that described each object and mathematical formulae which translated these items into three dimensional form, 'Journey' was produced. Using 7 stone 3 pounds of string divided into 627 pieces an installation was created which viewers could walk through. A projection of a journey at night by Nat Gillespie was played through the cobwebs of string.
Man’s real possession is his memory.
In nothing else he is rich, In nothing else he is poor.
Alexander Smith Dreanthorp
Usually everybody has heaps of accumulated piles of paper under their table and their desk, magazine and telephone notices which stream into our homes. Our home literally stands under a paper rain. These waterfalls of paper we arrange and periodically sort into groups. The rest of course is thrown out on the rubbish heap. It is in fact precisely this division of important papers from unimportant that is particularly necessary. If you do not do these sortings you allow the flow of paper to engulf you, considering it impossible to separate the important from the unimportant. Should everything be considered either valuable or rubbish. Then it should therefore be saved or thrown away. Given such a vital choice the decision is consequently agonizing. A simple feeling speaks about the value, the importance of everything. To deprive ourselves these paper symbols is perhaps to derive ourselves of our memories themselves. To deprive ourselves of all this means to depart from the past. Does this mean that we cease to exist? Alternatively, simple common sense reminds us that with the exception of important papers, memorable postcards and other letters dear to the heart are in fact rubbish. Why should common sense be stronger than memories? Grouped together, bound in folders, saved and cherished beyond their life expectancy these papers comprise the single uninterrupted fabric of an entire life, the way it was in the past and the way it is now. The rubbish itself is therefore nothing less than vital. After all it comprises the only genuine, real fabric of my life…