Of Those Absent and Present explores the physicality of touch, the desire for closeness or the need for distance at a time when touch brings with it the dangers of Covid-19. In these images the artist places her hand on the surface of the paper, making physical contact, becoming aware of the material and the sensation of touch. Over time presence is recorded, ultraviolet light from the sun altering the chemicals of the sensitised surface, creating a photographic record of existence.
Presence and absence are integral to these images. Made over two exposures, over two days, each hand is distanced by time, but flattened by the surface and the process. As the second exposure begins, the physicality of the first is already absent, the moment of presence has gone.
Compositionally the second exposure allows for playful interactions to emerge, suggestive of intimacy, comfort, a longing to be held or hesitation, anxiety, resistance, distance. These prints were inspired by the artists’ experiences of the first lockdown. In many ways the individual became lost in the enormity of the pandemic and this body of work provides a moment or opportunity to be seen beyond the global and national challenges.