Over the past 3 years too many of my close friends have died suddenly. Two days after returning from Berlin yet another close friend, whom I had been friends with for 19 years, committed suicide. In a haze of jet lag I was on yet another plane to Thailand for a 5 day funeral.
I have only just thought about the relationship of these past events to the presentation Jean Marie gave in Berlin and I'm even more grateful that Jean Marie is my studio advisor and will understand where I am at. I am only writing about this to give some context to the reason why I want to change a few ideas from my initial proposal.
After rereading my Final Proposal I realised that although the concept is exactly the same the way that I want to present the ideas has changed.
Since coming home from Thailand I have locked myself away in my studio (other than going to work), obsessed with research, reading, watching films/documentaries and pouring out ideas related to this project (most of which are disjointed and unusable but I have documented them anyway). The main problem has been a deep resistance to wanting to have anything to do with the outside world. My proposal was all about socially engaged work and going out into the community but all I want is solitude.
After much deliberation I have come to the conclusion that this is ok. Solitude, time with yourself and your own thoughts is what we all need from time to time and it is what we aren't letting ourselves do with the constant connection to our hand-held devices. After a few months of struggling with the idea I have only just now realised that what is really at the core of my proposal is creating an experience. No one said that the experience had to be social. I really don't care if the work is in a gallery or out on the street. The experience I am aiming to create moves beyond our immediate environment anyway.
I recently started thinking about doing the absolute opposite of what I had proposed by creating an experience where you immerse yourself in solitude...alone and connected to your own thoughts as a way of questioning all connection.
The goal is still to continue researching the intricate web of human and nonhuman relationships within the complex bio-spherical systems of our world. This will still be done by delving into aspects of neuroscience, psychology, mythology/story telling (as a form of connection) along with post-humanist theories and the Anthropocene but I now want to consider presenting the work in a more intimate and contemplative environment.
At this stage I want to be away from the world... hidden from the world... to create my own world that can be experienced in solitude. There is a power in the quiet, the space in between, in the void... that our modern technology driven world is not allowing us to tap into. The irony is that I want to use technology to create this project. To me technology isn't the problem, its the way we are using it that needs to be questioned.