Drawing, object and video, 2018-19

This work a reflection about the paradoxes inherent in the acts of being, seeing, remembering and depicting. I made it in response to my first-hand observation of Saturn on a summer night in June 2018. The work with two iterations, a drawing-object and a video. Two small drawings are encased in opposing sides of a thick lens frame. The figures, Saturn on one side, Jupiter on the other, are drawn inverted, evoking the photographic negative. The lenses obviate the mediating optical apparatus necessary to access such an image of Saturn in the first place.

The other iteration of this is a video. Displayed next to the drawings, it shows my drawing of Saturn being covered by water. Water effects the atmospheric disturbances seen in the eyepiece. The bubbles and the movement of the paper evince that this is a staged construct rather than a video of the telescope itself, reinforcing the distances between real object and its appearance, between first-hand experience and its translation into pictures. The tricks of fabrication foreground the absence – or even the possibility? – of an ‘original’. Is the original the live encounter between myself and Saturn? my memory of the event? Saturn itself? None of those are available or accessible to the viewer, who is denied the possibility of comparison.