Photomontage and sound installation which form part of a body of artworks in the exhibition (Dis)place. 

 

 

 

 


In these photographic and sound art installations, I explored the ambiguous experience of traumatic memories through visual and musical labyrinths. The labyrinth can be experienced in two contrasting ways. In a literal sense, a labyrinth has two viewpoints according to the beholder’s perspective. A viewpoint from the inside which makes the labyrinth seem impenetrable. A viewpoint from outside which let the viewer experience the labyrinth as a complex and logical structure.

The ambiguous experience of traumatic memories can be connected to the labyrinth as contrasting experience. On one hand, traumatic memories are a delayed response to trauma which is only triggered in situations reminiscent to the original traumatic event. On the other hand, the recollection of trauma entails a being aware of the post-traumatic acting out in order to work through the difficult emotions.

The photomontages are based on recurrent dreams in which I move through buildings with constantly changing interiors, creating a labyrinth-like experience and evoking emotions such as perplexity, helplessness, and anxiety. Various compositional strategies are applied in both the photomontages and soundscapes to simulate the impenetrable experience of a labyrinth.

The blurred boundaries between past and present, inside and outside, is a characteristic of the symptomatic “acting out” of the post-traumatic experience. The reception of art representing trauma can result in an over-identification with the post-traumatic emotions expressed in the artwork. This over-identification can transfer the shock of trauma through the structure of representation. In order to prevent the over-identification or over-appropriation, the viewer must communicate from a critical distance.  The labyrinth as metaphor is a central theme in the photomontages and sound installation. In these works an exploration of the inter-subjective process takes place and compositional strategies are used to create doubling ‘effects’. The aim of these artworks is to create a potential space for self-awareness and self-reflection in order to create distance and reflect critically on the problematic process of trauma.