one place, the other place, the in-between
One place, the other place, the in-between looks into the state of feeling socially isolated and alone within a restrictive, bleak environment. After relocating to London I have been living in a communal accommodation, yet I have never felt more socially isolated. In my room the window faces multiple brick walls, lacking a natural view and daylight. I intend to address the stigma often associated with isolation and loneliness as many choose to avoid talking about it. There is also a misconception about loneliness only striking older people, but in fact statistics show that it is particularly present amongst the younger age group of 15-34 year olds. People often feel lonely when there is a lack of companionship or when they are feeling left out. In this day and age, many people often communicate with family and friends over social media and FaceTime resulting in a lack of human contact.
However, instead of addressing my struggles, I investigate and experiment with various mindfulness techniques in order to find my own strategy to deal with these emotions. Personally, nature has played an important role as it has been a place where I have been able to feel free and manage my emotions, unlike the claustrophobic environment I have to call home. I seek to contextualise my understanding of solitude, the environment and landscape. A technique which is frequently used by people who practice mindfulness involves noticing the beautiful mundane aspects on a day to day basis. This inspired me to represent the beauty through landscapes which I felt were spacious, open and beautiful.
This body of work sets out to be multifaceted as with mindfulness no one technique works for all. It includes multiple layers of experiments in order to find what works best for each individual. My only access to nature within my room is the five minutes when the sunlight leaks through my window. The importance of working within the space is crucial as a means of learning to accept my living arrangement and creating something positive out of it. My interest lies in the confined claustrophobic view my window faces, which I hope to confront when working within it. With reference to mindfulness, I aim for the process to be rewarding and accessible to anyone. For this reason I aim to use the cyanotype method, incorporating sunlight and chemicals to create prints. By printing landscape imagery on bricks, I hope to create a bigger structure referencing the various views I would rather see through my window. This project aims to reach people who may be experiencing loneliness or isolation and encourage them to find their own way of coping with it. Nevertheless, to express the feeling of solitude - embrace it, tackle these issues and confront them.