Edges of the sea drawings and installations
Mapping edges of the sea.
The drawing and installation project are part of a practice of walking, wandering and a personal mapping practice of the edges of the sea.
Gazing outwards at the sea, the ocean becomes a poem without words. The repetition of the waves breaking on the beach, rhythmically, followed by a motion of water withdrawing back into the large masses of sea. The edges between water and land become clearer and sharper as the water quickly evaporates leaving the sand moist. Walking here, wandering through, along these edges, the process of a mapping of the edges of the sea begins. Using ink and paper, the drawings are made only from the motion of walking along the edges of the sea, holding the paper still, while walking along the edge between water and land. The water's effect, hitting the ink and paper, become small records on paper. A language is visible. Like poems each drawing reveal the different qualities and characteristics of the water. The drawings are made by the sea, and by the motion of walking along its edges. Like small poems, each drawing reveals something about the characteristics of the waves and currents in the water when touching land. When the weather is still, the line of the water touching the paper is like a horizontal motion, while when the wind picks up and the waves of the water hit the paper, the ink stains travel all around the paper. The process is the most important to my work, so I have documented by photographing the process as I go along. The drawings and installations are glimpses of an incomplete narrative, an offering, or an unfolding narrative, it is an unending process.
The drawings exist, side by side, as fragments of language, of the visible and invisible. They exist as a form of language; a form of the sea. What are these forms? What is the language of the sea?
Returning to the edges of the sea, the process can continue of mapping new drawings of it's edges. The drawings are poems of the visible and invisible. The spaces of existence that one does not see. The in-between spaces of existence. Who are the poems about? Who owns the voice of the sea? Here are sets of observations picked up from the current news situation from the ongoing refugee crisis. The drawings and installations work as a trail or trace, a clue , the sea reminds the viewer of the unfolding narrative.
Observation 1) October 3rd, 2021
Reminded of the news I read 24 days ago from today's current date. 70 people missing outside of Libya trying to cross by boat to Malta.
(disappeared)/ sea drawing/ink on recycled paper/2021
The drawings are telling a story. The outlines of human figures are dissolving as a black mass in the ink drawings. Is the sea showing a language of someone, somewhere? A poem made by the refugees that have disappeared?
Observation 2 October
Do we connect with our own language?
A language of numbers and statistics read in the newspaper or through the news.
2021: from January to September 2021 1369 people drowned crossing the Mediterranean.
(somewhere, someone), sea drawing , ink on recycled paper, 2021
A struggle exists within the drawing. Someone, somewhere has disappeared . The boat refugees have disappeared and continue to disappear. Thousands in numbers per year. As the sea reveals a language of the visible and invisible forces of nature. The drawings are communicating a message. A message that becomes visible through a mapping of it's edges. A communication is visible from within the depths of the vast sea. A communication that goes beyond limitations of the sea's edges, it stretches beyond, into a revelation of human tragedy and encountering.
The installations are connected to the drawings. They consist of an urgency to try and build a "home". What has happened to the refugees who never were found crossing the sea? Where did their homes go? How do we understand "home"? A home is a fragile structure, it can disappear. The waves can erase our traces of home. These constructions of a home from driftwood at the edge of the sea are reflections of our vulnerability and fragility of our own existence.
The Ice Ship by Sue Hubbard
All night it is day. Glycerine shadows fuse sea and sky
into something indivisible. Hoar-frost and snow mingle
This is the end of the inhabitable world we are so far north.
Snow-clad mountains spit fire, icebergs drift
in a boiling swell piercing the pale sun in its net of frosty air
We have been at sea for days.
Ice-cold, iron-cold, our lungs tense against the razor chill,
it could be the moon we are so distant from ourselves.
Dreaming and loving here are the same hunger
as we wander in watery exile, storm-beaten
by perishing winds. Ahead the glacial hull looms
spectral in the crushing heaves of pack-ice,
trapped like a fisherman’s float
in the mouth of a silver carp. Tattered sails,
fragments of mast, poke from their crystal coffin
like splintered whale-bone trepanning the empty heart of blue.
For thirteen years they have waited, penitent
as glass angels, black lips welded to alabaster tongues,
untold tales frost-bitten in their throats. Alone
at his log the Captain holds patient vigil
awaiting a huff of divine breath.
So far from home we glide directionless
beneath the bald sun
through cerulean ice-fields, past glacial slabs
too cold even for sea birds,
as grievous and exhausted
we give ourselves up to what we’ve become