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Deep Time Journey



The title of this post was inspired by a book I'm reading right now titled, "Underland: A Deep Time Journey" by Robert McFarlane. The image I'm showing here is one I created from masking and layering photos I've taken both past and present. The content is unearthing or re-seeing the energy that lingers in a familiar space, perhaps revealing stories or strong emotions that have settled there.


McFarlane's book resonates with me because we both explore the topics of myth, literature, memory, and land within our work. In the piece I've shown here the double exposure gives a glimpse of a field seen through two houses. Suggesting that multiple stories / lives have unfolded here. The idea of deep time digs into the ground and what lies beneath. It is looking at time through a long long lens. I don't know that my work goes back that far - I'm more interested how the "past" is still lingering around today because the past that I often explore is within generations or centuries - not the millennia of deep time necessarily.


Why is this distinction important? I think a shorter lens gets time tangled up a bit easier. I feel like a hundred years, two hundred years, allows us to overlap and reach back with more ease. To the point where it almost feels like the energy hasn't had time to fully settle into the deep layers of the ground, but instead is towards the surface enough that if we kicked up dust we might just breathe it in.


The field that I photographed is one I'm quite familiar with as it's in walking distance of my home. My kids run through it weekly and play on the playground now built in the front. We've walked the paths on repeat and drive by it on the way to school. But as we pass it on the road, we also pass a barn close by that keeps a lot of secrets. It was a part of the Underground Railroad. Which of course puts my mind in a tailspin, quite often if I'm to be honest here, thinking about who else ran through those fields, with much more at stake. I've just started this series of doubles and am interested to see where it takes me. Check back weekly for new posts on old stories.

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