I hate the title “untitled” but for now this will have to do.
This is a piece I’ve been working on almost subconsciously since I started at art school. I’ve always had a bizarre fascination with light switches and plug sockets. They’ve always intrigued me. But until December of 2009 I never really had a proper connection with them. Please excuse the god awful pun.
On the First of the month my grandad suffered a massive stroke, his third in fact, although the others had been significantly smaller. The first the size of a pea and the second the size of a small computer chip. However, this third and unfortunately final stoke was the size of a large pear, and twelve days later he peacefully passed away. Which for him was probably the best option. Now if I return to the first of December, the first switch I turned on alone, after hearing the news, the fuse blew and it made me think we’re actually not all that different from these simple structures we take for granted daily. We expect turn on or as we’d see it, to wake up and remain functional until we turn off or go to sleep. The exact same thing we expect from a light switch. However this is not always the case. Just like a socket or switch fuses can blow and our functionality can diminish and in some cases disappear altogether. So why do we take it for granted?
I originally started this project with an almost monotonous, but still ongoing, series of images of singular switches and sockets.
But I soon realised these images were not now, nor ever going to say anything other than WOW, this bitch be crazy/ that’s a shit load of light switches to any viewer. This had lead me to create another body of work within this body of work. The images below are some of these:
These images already, to me anyway, are much better at beginning to expand my idea because they make the viewer ask themselves questions, such as, What the fuck are these photographs of? The answer is a simple one too. They’re images of light. Light projected onto a wall. A blank, boring, beige wall. I do not expect the viewer to understand why these works were made just by looking at them, but I want them to have to use that one amazing function they take for granted to begin to work it out. Regardless of where they end up, whether it is anywhere near the original meaning behind these works, it doesn’t matter. They’ll still have thought more about it.
This project is still on going and I’ll probably be taking photographs of light switches and light switch related materials until I cease to function.
On a separate note, these works were recently exhibited in a class curated show alongside this wanky and pretentious artists statement, which basically says the same as the above paragraph only it’s a lot less accurate. In fact, looking back on it now… It’s kinda shite in comparison. NOTE TO SELF: next time dinnae try and sound like such a pretentious wanker.
“Imagine being completely unaware that a function you’ve forever taken for granted is seconds away from malfunction. Our subconscious seems to be in control but even deeper than this sits a vast reservoir of systems that just operate. Like the flicking of a switch our brain activity can cease to exist. Why do we never seem to contemplate these systems that are so automatic and familiar?”