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Unpreservable Memories of Place

Janet Laurence

Janet Laurence, Verdant Studio (2003)

My artwork over a long period has had a preoccupation with evanescence as a play between permanence and ephemera, between stability and stasis.

To some extent, it is the goal of all art to preserve matter or a moment in time, and to stay flux. To keep tension alive in the work requires concentration on what is unpreservable, on what can neither be resolved nor steadied, on what it is difficult or impossible to remember.

The work frames time as processes of decay, erosion, slow collapse or erasure. In some, it invokes the worn-out condition of nature, of materials, of images, of architecture or of landscapes. In others it refers to the quiet resonance of objects, voices, mechanisms, atmospheres, places.

There is time framed by works which reveals its rhythms, but there are also works that recall forgotten times and places or times and places that are no longer accessible to us, like an archaeology of the ephemeral, or like the trace of a disappearance of matter.

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Janet Laurence


Newcastle University, Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom, NE1 7RU
Culture Lab forms part of an evolving network of artists, researchers and scientists 
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