On Duration - Chronophotography


The project takes into account garden typology as a primary medium of study in an attempt to understand the formulation of space keeping in mind the continuous flow of time – the duration. The project refers to early experiments by Etienne-Jules Marey on multiple exposure on a single image plate and Eadweard Muybridge’s motion studies.

The series works around re-articulation of garden space by staging the physically scanned garden elements through the technique of digital reconstruction and tracing the body movement in and around them. The recorded image/images are overlapped multiple times to speculate on this new space which is an assemblage of the form of an object and the movement it undergoes over the course of time. Movement here is that of a subject scanning the object. The resultant images refer to the overlapping planes in Picasso and Braque, the linear stratification observed in the work of Corbusier, Eisenman and Loos; questioning the very notion of space. Space is usually endowed with an idea of pre-existing neutral condition, independent of the content, occurrences and events taking place within.

36 moving images per second

As Elizabeth Grosz talks about duration, “Duration, by contrast, is a multiplicity of succession, heterogeneity, differences in kind and qualitative differentiations. It is continuous and virtual. Duration is divisible, of course, but it is transformed through the act of division”. It is a successive framing of qualitative change pervading onto each other. Deleuze related duration to a process of becoming, a change that is substance itself. Changes are however brought by the content or the event taking place within.

Duration is non-spatial, a single continuum of past and present forming as a whole, a conscious state. It is through this phenomenon one can access past in terms of memory. Memory is a perception of already experienced momentary units. The supposition of this uniform space interchanging into a continuous transformation due to adjacent movement in and around- instills within what Henri Bergson termed ‘Duration’.

36 moving images composed on one picture plane

48 moving images composed on one picture plane

© sudhir ambasana/2022