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Percipere, (2009) 8" six projection. Colour, Sound
To perceive outside of the range of senses, seeing beyond, being witnesss to something outside of the frame, are all phrases contained in the title of this work.
Consisting of four projections, the moving image focuses on a type 22, Chiver’s built pillboxes and it’s immediate environment, situated, at the side of the Kennet and Avon canal, in Seend, Wiltshire. It was filmed over a period of two years, and represents intermittent visits to the site, witnessing the effects of weather and time.
‘Percipere’ uses a fixed viewpoint across the five image frames as a way to both focus attention on the small apparent movements within the site of filming and to stabilize an otherwise unstable visual field.
The visual scope of the site was determined by understanding an average, velocity range of a rifle (used by the home guard at the time of world war 11). This measurement is fairly arbitrary, as the weapons were not wholly satisfactory, and differences between kinetic damage and chemical damage remains an arguable relationship. However, by relating the possible physical history of the site, in this way to the lens-work, it began to give me an internal logic to film with. The points of filming radiate from the sights (or squints) of the pillbox: the length and breadth of the site has been determined in this way.
‘Percipere’ relies on duration to ‘see’ the small movements of the rural site. The shots are mostly mundane in nature, witnessed on successive visits over a two-year span.
A further surprising projection, cuts across the room, filling the senses with rhythmic sensation and vital colour.
The fixed point of view filming witnessed across all of the sequence frames, challenges the essential perception of the viewer, who for the most part would nominally only give a cursory glance to this type of structure beside a canal bank.
In the bounds of the installation, perception becomes entwined with duration: incidental movements through time become focal, and time becomes a malleable surface across the temporal space of the gallery.
1 Chiver was a local building company that secured the wartime contract around this area to construct part of the interior stop-line. This was common practice around the rural parts of the country, and the pillboxes were made out of material’s common to the region in which they were built, based on availability as much as anything else
Click here to view moving image clip