Saturday, 16 May 2020

Project Development: Object Therapy

Georges Perec (Author of Life)

When in doubt I like to consult Perec - Perec was a writer, filmmaker, and essayist.  He enjoyed wordplay, creating crosswords, classification (taxonomy), and lists.  He tried to find order in life essentially and here in Species of Spaces he states when considering the objects on his worktable 'It's several years now since that I have contemplated writing the history of some of the objects on my worktable.  I wrote the beginning of it nearly three years ago; re-reading it, I notice that of the seven objects I talked about, four are still on my work table (although I have moved house in-between).  Tow has been changed: a hand blotter which has been replaced with another hand blotter (they're very much alike but the second one is bigger), and a battery alarm clock (whose normal position is on the bedside table, where it is today), replaced by another wind-up alarm clock.  The third object has disappeared from my work table.' (Perec, 1997: P145) and so this continues, to some this may not seem very interesting a chapter on objects on a work table however I do consider this a piece of high art.  How important the objects are, Perec recognises this in every part of his life, the spaces he inhabits day to day.  This is why I have now photographed my own objects that I will use for this project.  I will add and discuss these in the next post.

Objects inhabit our lives and become part of them, I cannot imagine what it would be to lose all objects that I have.  As I discussed before about them being touchstones - they are memory but they are for the moment, they create familiarity, I come into my home and the objects welcome me, they are a constant, a comfort, a safe place.  

The objects I will discuss all inhabit my home and I will add these photographs with text to create a small book - here is an example with one of the images - I have just grabbed this image - the rest are taking some time to become contact sheets as I took over 500 images (the miracle of digital photography - means I can play until my heart's content).

The Marble Hand

The hand here has really no purpose, originally bought for an art project that I have forgotten (or never developed) I just keep it on the shelf.  It sits among the books and like statues where they are pointing to God, I rather consider that this hand does the same. It is the hand that is reaching to God for me, every day.  It has no function, it is not attached to memory, it is simply a totem that is constant.

This is kind of the idea - a sample, of what I intend here - eventually, my pictures will be complete and I will share the set with you!


Perec G. (1997) Species of Spaces and Other Pieces, Penguin Books Ltd. London

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