Dating Images series, 2005.
4 photomontages, Rag bright white inkjet pigment print on 310g mat paper, 20 x 26 cm. Edition of 5 + 3 artist copies.
Series complemented by a text (see below). Non published.
“Dating images”, 2005.
Temperatures were rising yesterday at La Petite Industrie de l’Image Sensorielle. A group of images that had been lying peacefully, silently in the scorching summer breeze suddenly began to stir, rising and falling in unison. From them rose a dull, throbbing sound… the natural pulsation of the photographic material which, after years of lying frozen, was now awakening in the exceptional heat. The swarm of images wriggled and squirmed, yet remained tightly-packed, allowing nothing to escape.
As the breeze continued to blow, almost mechanically, through the space, pumping it with the constant force that sustains life, the general configuration began to show distinct signs of metamorphosis. The throng of images had spread slightly and seemed to have quietened down. But around the edges, four breakaway groups, more agitated than the others, were slowly altering the intrinsic balance of the whole. Seeds of melodies could be heard in their vibrations; occasional phrases would surface to suggest that somewhere within this heap, a mysterious story lay hidden.
From this pile of photographic rubble, which La Petite Industrie de l’Image Sensorielle had stored for so long, four animated groups had emerged. Was it really by chance that each one included traces of human bodies, unlike the rest of these photographic bricks whose content was far more inert? This mass of images resembled an abandoned image-city from which a handful of living-dead had escaped.
Yes, four phantom-families, fossils of human existence frozen on paper for so very very long, were striving to come back to life, this time as images.
These years of hibernation hadn’t quite dulled their survival instinct and in (literally) the heat of this moment they had glimpsed an opportunity to reproduce and to give their life as images a foothold in time. And so this day, immediately perceived as a window onto eternity, was a warmly extended invitation to mingle and merge. The sound of these photo-animated images rubbing together left no doubt as to what, despite their uncertain age, they were up to.
Tangled together in heavy whirlwinds of warm air, in groups of six the images flirted with each other, alternately avoiding and seeking to catch the eye. Armed with its encrypted genetic baggage and the story of its origins, each one tried its luck.
Sometimes one of the images would show itself completely, fabulous and radiant, while another curled up in its corner, shyly observing. Their collective parading began to resemble a curious choreography whose meaning was unclear. Would it ever even end? As it was, the images, in their groups of six, seemed to be sizing each other up, searching for shared tastes, colours and connections… do our backgrounds coincide? do we speak the same language? where do our mental landscapes begin and end? are our skins compatible?… clearly, here were images on a blind date: tactile, communal, charming, chatty, a little confused and clattering. The intrigue surrounding the outcome grew and one could only speculate as to where these animated images were heading or at least hoped to end.
But before an answer could be found, in the beat of a bird’s wing the wind dropped. Silence descended quicker than a flash. In a split-second the images had returned to their solid state; not a murmur could be heard, yet a new fossil with an unknown pattern had appeared. For as strange as it may seem, in that brief instant, the rush of love and the replicative instinct that had blown through
La Petite Industrie de l’Image Sensorielle had given birth to four poly-clone images, each ready to multiply and to set out on its own journey on whichever pages were willing to carry it away.