Meanings are the product of images. We attach meanings to images in an attempt to make sense of the visual world. The meaning, however, does not always reside in the unique surface of an image. The experience a viewer has with an image or even the context in which it is viewed in can have a direct effect on its meaning. Everything that surrounds an image forms a part of the meaning that we find within it. Meaning is the product of a relationship between image and viewer.
I have not titled this body of work in an attempt to eliminate bias. I do not want the viewer’s mind to create shortcuts in order to find an image based on a preconceived title. The viewer should be allowed to find their own imagery in this body of work by using the available information within the pieces in front of them. Titles are irrelevant, the viewer’s assumptions are more important.
This idea is reminiscent of the Rorschach Inkblot Test used by psychologists. It is a method of cognition where patients are shown a series of ten inkblots. They are asked to interpret what they can see within the inkblots whilst every aspect of their response is monitored. No response is considered incorrect. In my recent work I have used imagery similar to the Rorschach Inkblot test plates as a motif to evoke thought. The Rorschach images are almost symmetrical in form but the unpredictability of ink and paint mediums will never allow for complete symmetry.
I have recently become interested in Zen Calligraphy. The marks made during this process cannot be controlled; they are said to come from within. The marks can never be repeated as they are so freely constructed using wet media. Breathing life into a mark comes from lack of control; instinct takes over and frees the mind. This approach to mark making has become a driving force in my current work. It has inspired me to create imagery that can have endless variation.
In this body of work I have juxtaposed the sporadic nature of thought with the regimented form of testing procedure. Ten pieces of work are displayed with an equal distance between them contrasting with an array of images hanging in clustered formation as if to represent the freedom of individual thought.
We attach meaning to imagery in an attempt to make sense of the visual world. We relate images to our own life experience. The meaning of an image belongs to everyone who engages with it; the creator and spectator, manipulator and critic. I have created this body of work in response to the formalities of an artist statement. As an artist I am expected to explain my work in detail; apply a meaning to my imagery as though it resides in the surface of my work. These images are ambiguous forms; they represent what the spectator derives from their experience with the body of work. The meaning of these images does belong to me. It belongs to anyone who cares to engage with them.