Passing conceptually emerged from news items and images in relation to the war in Syria and the subsequent exodus of refugees across the Mediterranean as they sought asylum in Europe, frequently in overcrowded inflatable dinghies. They risked, and far too often, lost their lives. In particular two news items a year apart had a significant impact. One was on the 2nd September 2015, the drowning of Alan Kurdi along with his four year old brother Ghalib and his mother, Rehanna, who were washed up on the beach at Bodrum in Turkey, never having reached their initial destination, the island of Kos, Greece. The televised image of Alan, a small child washed up on the shore, and then gently removed by a policeman, acted like a contemporary 'napalm girl' in its capacity to shock and emotionally engage a news weary public, myself included.
The other significant image was on SBS News 20th September 2016 and showed an orderly group of civilians marching across the European countryside, with what appeared to be a policewoman and policeman at the head of the crowd. There was only 4 seconds of this image, but I immediately recognised this as a pivotal image, which would form the basis of my next artwork. These 4 seconds were slowly, frame by frame in Photoshop, simplified then extended to create the current 18 seconds, the minimum required to be able to produce the video, Passing.
The Title 'Passing' encompassed the whole Installation exhibited at Bellas Gallery in October 2018. This refers to 'passing' in all the varied and potential meanings invoked by the word and the work. Passing as passage, as migration, as transition, as loss, as death, as fleeting; as moving toward, past and away from something or someone. Also, passing and its ambiguity in our current time when we record our lives, our tragedies, our celebrations, and are able to return and re-immerse ourselves in a past experience, though never the same. And finally, the passing of time, and what that means in relation to the emergence of video as an art-form and more importantly for myself, to when the Sony Hi8 Handycam first became available in the early 1990's facilitating a shift in my practice in 1992 from object based toward media based.