Domestic Landscapes

“Domestic Landscapes” (1991)

Domestic Landscapes (1991-92) was shot on Hi 8, literally made “at home” using domestic video equipment. Its subject matter is highly personal- perhaps even private and at times very intimate; the voyeuristic aspect of watching is an important underlying theme of the work. The landscapes that the work presents are everyday places; views from windows, parks, gardens, travelling along the motorway- brief glimpses into personal interiors. They are the places that form the background and the setting of everyday experience. I have deliberately made reference to still photography- both in terms of how the images are composed and in the subject matter itself. The tape is a chronicle of personal details, the minutiae of everyday quotidian experience. The sequences could be viewed as a series of moving stills, or in other cases, the moments leading up to the fixing of a particular “decisive moment”.

The soundtrack has an important role in Domestic Landscapes, as it is often the clue to the off-camera or out-of-frame situation. Traffic sounds moving across the space, or the sound of a distant railway for example, tie even the most rural image to the proximity of its domestic setting. As the work unfolds the soundtrack reveals another “home movie” tactic- the deliberate staging of events for the camera. The authenticity of the action is called into question and yet the images always remain acceptably believable. My intention was to try to make a work that hovered somewhere between visual diary and documentary.