Monday, 31 July 2017
Laura Hudson Mackay - Cameras - The World's First Time Machines?
Try to imagine a life without timekeeping.
You probably can’t. You know the month, the year, the day of the week.
There is a clock on the wall or the dashboard of your car. You have a schedule, a calendar, a time for dinner or a movie. Yet all around you, timekeeping is ignored. Birds are not late. A dog does not check its watch. Deer do not fret over passing birthdays.
Man alone measures time.
Man alone chimes the hour.
And because of this, man alone suffers a paralyzing fear that no other creature endures.
A fear of time running out.
Mitch Albom – The Timekeeper
Could cameras be the world’s first time machines? After all, they do stop time!
There seem to be endless artistic photographic explorations of the notion of time: exploring memory; capturing moments in time; creating compilations of the seasons changing; comparing past and present, then and now.
I strive to live outside time, to live in destiny, to stop chasing the seconds and live for the moment. Living outside time is difficult but there is an occasional glimpse, a breakthrough where I am set free from the slavery. This is one reason I often choose to shoot using film and spend time printing my work in the darkroom, it allows me to be slow.
Back when I was a child, my Grandad told me his ideal gift would be a ‘Little Box of Time’. Oh how my young brain tried to work out how I might be able to constrain and box just a little of it for him.
Since that time, for many years I have been collecting clocks and watches of all shapes and sizes, people have even been known to package them up and post them to me, sometimes even just the mechanical parts. They are in little boxes and in drawers and of course displayed on shelves too, but not one of them is set at the correct time. When my father (who religiously winds timepieces daily) comes to visit, he struggles to cope with the disorder of my unruly clocks and my desire to ignore the endless stream of seconds whizzing by.
Of course I did eventually figure out how to make a little box of time. Unfortunately, as a gift for Grandad, I was too late.
Laura Hudson Mackay