Presence of Absence

#84 Apocalypse

What is presence? What is absence? In my recent practice, photography has provided me with the means through which to deconstruct dualities of presence/ absence and sense/ nonsense. In this series entitled ‘Presence of Absence’, my concern has been with how the image frame instigates a tension between presence and absence, and a play between limit and transgression. Here, the language of photography is used to explore the spatial limits of two-dimensional representation and to contemplate how framing affects meaning. Photography provides a context, frame and structure, but it also provides me with base material for drawing and digital modification. My intervention in this series of photographs is a decontextualised black shape/ object/ void that cuts into reality. For me, the contrast between these visual elements evokes quite literally Henri Lefebvre’s assertion that “we are surrounded by emptiness, but it is an emptiness filed with signs”. The photographs in this series were taken in and around an apartment complex in Yelahanka, a satellite town north of Bangalore. Across these images a non-linear narrative begins to emerge – the black shape moves in and out of the frame, sometimes it is overt, at other times it exists on the periphery. It is through this sequence that the shape begins to develop its personal character and meaning.