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Ian Robertson
Rufus Butler Seder and Darren Almond

Chapter in book

Sequences: Contemporary Chronophotography
Wallflower Press
ISBN: 9781905674763

editor: Paul St George

I was commissioned to write a contextualizing essay on the artists Darren Almond and Rufus Butler Seder for inclusion in a publication on contemporary chronophotography. The book was developed from the Arts Council funded Sequences exhibition at Peterborough Museum and Art Gallery.

I was familiar with Almond’s work on Auschwitz (Oswiecim) as it engaged with my own research interests into representations of place, space and events, especially places or events of historical or social significance. My approach was to compare and contrast the use of time and duration by both artist and with Almond his engagement with memory and the relationship between past and present.

Almond grounds his practice very firmly in this fact that we are situated beings and that it is within duration that we think, feel and see. He wishes to impress on us that our experience and perceptions of place and time are constructed and penetrated by a number of economies, political, geographic and aesthetic. His work endeavours to engage with the present through an encounter with the past and the function of memory and expectation in this process. Places and spaces for him are sites of witness, where spatial relations and social relations arise together engendering social stratification and relations of difference. Places shape social organisation and behaviour creating hierarchies and topographies of class, profession, gender and race. They are saturated with histories and competing narratives. They are also psychological spaces of the imagination where the border between the real and the virtual becomes thin and permeable. It is at this point on the cusp of the real and the virtual that he suggests that the artwork generates its effects.

The essay allowed me to extend my own research interests into representations of place, space and event as they are presented in the visual arts.

read the full chapter:

Rufus Butler Seder and Darren Almond

related outcome:
Paul St George: Sequences: Contemporary Chronophotography

back to Ian Robertson home page

London Metropolitan University