In our first realized collaboration, Anti-Local, we created diptych photographs where two images came together to form a visual dialogue about proximity, locality, and space versus place. When pairing the images we paid specific attention to subtle details such as light, color, and texture. The combination and juxtaposition of the images in the diptychs brought photography itself to be examined, showing how meaning exists and can be created. In these images the inhabitants of the homes are absent but evidence of their existence manifests through the objects in the depicted spaces. The juxtaposition of the almost identical images created an uncanny mirroring, suggesting a lack of a regional specificity and individual identity between our very different and distinct locations.
Many of these ideas have re-materialized in our second collaborative project, Conflation, in which two images of our own home interiors are visually connected to create the illusion of a singular photograph and space. In doing so, the “new” space that is created through this process appears as one home. The literal connection of the two images in the print creates a thin seam in the middle of the composition that appears and disappears. This newly forged space forms a photographically unique location where memories and past experiences merge to create new histories, narratives, and non-places. Through this language of photography we attempt to subvert boundaries of geographic location and ownership. Additionally, the meaning of home is deconstructed to explore notions of perception, distance, family and friendship, and time and space.
In Roland Barthes’ Camera Lucida, he states “Whatever it grants to vision and whatever its manner, a photograph is always invisible: it is not it that we see”. Our collaborative approach is to precisely deconstruct “it” while making “it” seen.