Unknown Men & Unknown Women (2020) make use of the distorted planar image, a form of holographic image, which becomes perfectly reformed when reflected in a mirrored globe at a cylinder’s base. They are named after a series of boxes full of images in Grimsby Library archives labeled ‘Unknown women’ and ‘Unknown men’ which I came across whilst researching the area’s archival maps. In being described as unknown, it questions notions of identification and recognition; these people who had inhabited this district were, and are, unknown – but only to us. The cylinder’s design makes us really look again at these so-called unknown, questioning classification and lack of identity.
The viewer’s face is also reflected into the very centre of the image reflected onto the mirrored globe, and not only do we look at these people, and give them due attention, we can also view ourselves caught in the act of observing. This seemingly magical distorting technique distances the artwork from traditional modes of display; the images become independent and fascinating, the small sculptural works performing strangely altered states through the complex physics of reflection and refraction.
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