“After all, isn’t the story of modern and contemporary art and its cult of the object really just a myth of materialism, of matter as an ideal? For me, it is a refusal to acknowledge the transitory, a failure to see that are really exists so to speak, in transit.”

- Francis Alÿs

The temporality of things is what I am interested in investigating; how things found in the natural world as well as man-made objects transpose, rotate, decompose, shift, translate, and move within time and space; not only this, but how these processes perpetually occur. Much of the imagery I choose for my work is engages me because of my initial repulsion or fear to/of it. Repeating and relocating such forms involve actions of exchange and transition that is very much connected with the flux and change in everyday life. In working with repetitions of a form of an object/thing, anxieties towards the form, or created by the form can be experienced. It is important for me to make an image of a thing or object unfamiliar, make it elusive, even unreference these things/objects out of a the recognizable setting from which they once belonged subtracting their defining features or physical details, often ending as a shadow, trace, or index of something left behind – a kind of residue. This suggests their impermanent existence and parallels with the fact that shadows themselves are memories of things that have once been.

In this work, From here to there, and here again, the ‘object’ I use is that of a grocery cart, itself distorted and changed by a moment in time (it was found run over by a snowplow). This object is my reference from which all forms are created. The paper cutouts are traced from shadows projected by light on the grocery cart, which in turn are then are used ad the object to create another shadow and another tracing. This process is reductive (distilling the initial referent) but also additive (producing multiples and numerous residues), which is an important part of my process and the experience of the work, as it speaks of the qualities of the shadow itself - a present rendering of an absent object.

I was initially exploring the ways in which shadows occur through differing light angles and vantages, in addition to how shadows move in a repetitive pattern during certain motions. For instance the way a shadow will repeat on the inside of a room when a car drives by the window at night, or similarly, the way a shadow will repeat on the inside of a car when passing street lamps. More recently I have found curious relations with the shadow, like that of the cinematic phantom from films circa 1920, which have aided my exploration of why ‘the shadow and ‘the trace’ are fascinating as both concept and image. Lotte H. Eisner’s “The Haunted Screen” and Lloyd Micheals’ “Nosferatu of the Phantom of Cinema” have been of great influence to me, particularly Micheals’ discussion on film projection, and absent presence.

© Ebony Jansen