“We are all curating and cultivating a museum of our own lives. We turn ourselves into specimens. Because we feel that we should be doing something, we do – by documenting every inch of our existence”.
Animas Documentadas is an animation-based installation made during my three month residency with Intercambiador ACART in Madrid. This piece has been exibited at a group show in Nadie, Nunca, Nada, No gallery in Madrid and the Cosmic Perspectives show curated by Lumen in Ugly Duck, London.
This work is the outcome of a three-month residency during which I used the idea of documentation to explore the disparity between our physical and our virtual lives. I used the metaphor of specimens in jars, museums and curation to delve into the effects of documentation in a digital world and how it results in barriers between us and others: Documentation, central to the process of stop-motion animation, also resembles the manner in which we render our experiences into the virtual world.
The piece consists of a stop-motion animation of a levitated figure slowly turning. The animation is projected in a darkened space onto four panels hung one in front of the other, separated by a certain distance. Each subsequent panel, of Polypropylene, a type of transparent plastic-like Perspex –is more opaque than the previous one so that the projection is distorted as it traverses each panel and so the audiences’ perception of the animation changes as they move around the piece.
The movements of the figure overlap each other at points within the animation interrupting the expected relationship of how the figure will turn in time without speeding up or slowing down the animation. Equally because the installation allows for the audience to walk all the way around and in between the panels, the effect is that as the figure turns, reflections and shadows overlap with the animation on the panels so that each member of the audience can have a different relationship with the work.
Below are some photos from the Cosmic Perspectives show.
The project started off initially as a series of paintings. At the time I was primarily a painter, working in the Natural History Museum in London, I was driven by watching the public’s relationship to the exhibits and their phones. I was also inspired by some of the collections in the Natural History Museum and drawing in the Huntarian museum. I began to experiment with animation with the support of London Creative Network, a programme run by SPACE studios. Starting with drawings and chalk animation and stepping into projection for my first projected animation called ‘Gabriel’.
I used the Intercambiador residency as a period in which to extend my animation into installation. To experiment, progress, document and develop upon questions that examine how humans hold themselves precariously in the gap between virtual and physical in a time when reality is no longer accepted as more ‘real’ in biological form than as a computer’s algorithm.
Below are some of my early drawings and tests done both in London and Madrid.
Drawing, chalk on paper
An experiment in translating motion into drawing and see what is happens when you take an animation make freeze it over time.