Whilst debating which images to include for my upcoming Pecha Kucha presentation (see previous post) I began reminiscing about how this particular journey i.e. the bobbin installation, started. If I had to pinpoint a time, it would be during my second year at uni when I became fascinated with lines. During the summer break I was sitting idly at the computer pretending to do research when I typed ‘lines’ into the search box. Among the thousands of references was a book, ‘Lines A Brief History’ by Tim Ingold (published by Routledge). Intrigued by the suggestion that I would never consider lines in the same way after reading the book I went ahead and ordered a copy. Even before the end of the Introduction my mind was racing. Ingold’s description of lines as threads and traces – transforming from one to the other, and that ‘whenever threads turn into traces, surfaces are formed, and whenever traces turn into threads, they are dissolved’ – formed such beautiful, ephemeral images in my mind.
It was however, his ideas about life that really got me thinking; ‘Life on the spot surely cannot yield an experience of place, of being somewhere. To be a place, every somewhere must lie on one or several paths of movement to and from places elsewhere. Life is lived, along paths, not just in places, and paths are lines of sort’. Immediately I began to look around me, where I lived, the paths that connected from one place to another – and that’s where the canals came in…and they led to the textile mills and the rest is history as they say!
Tim Ingold’s book is fascinating, even the chapter headings conjure up the notion of flowing lines – how one thing leads to another. It’s well worth a look.
And yes, I do feel it would be a tad unfair not include an image of this book in my Pecha Kucha presentation – after all, it did start me off on my journery!!
(With thanks to Lines A Brief History by Tim Ingold)