Café Delight is the title of a suite of looped stop-frame animations of paint undergoing a range of manipulations on a glass surface. The works have been screened singly and in groups as both video projections and presented on wall-mounted LCD monitors.
An issue that arose out of both my earlier series of works: “Somewhere Else” and “Diary of an Omnivore” was the durational aspect of making a painting, as distinct from the instantaneousness of lens-based media. This gave rise to the notion of the relationship between the artist and the work. It is obvious that artists make works, but do works also, somehow, make artists? I have been aware for some time that the act of making a painting results in you thinking in particular way, distinct from writing, or taking a photograph. Painting changes your thought processes, or at least gives rise to a particular quality within them. I wondered if these differences in thought processes might provide a clue as to the real distinction between paintings and photographs. Has painting survived the advent of the camera, not because of its physical characteristics but because of the relationships the practice of painting embodies?
The animations were in part an attempt to manifest this sense of mutual manipulation. They also sought, specifically by filming paint, to infer links with practices associated with the moving image, another set of media that require an intensive relationship with a single surface over a substantial period of time. The loops reveal physical characteristics of the medium, only visible through time and involvement.Alongside the above, an additional concern I have become interested in, in producing the animations (together with an ongoing series of drawings of individual paint blobs produced in a manner reminiscent of botanical illustrations) is speculation on possible links between the Rococo period and the birth of Natural Philosophy. The works in the Café Delight series intend to reflect on this relationship between human impulses to embellish, and the desire to classify. This in turn has related back to contemporary filming of micro-organisms and deep sea fauna.
Café Delight was exhibited as follows: