The first 4 months of my Copenhagen adventure has flown by. It’s a cliché, but boarding the aeroplane from Sydney, in lots of ways, honestly feels like yesterday.
Since arriving at Copenhagen airport I’ve experienced so much. I’ve spent more time away from the siblings (who I miss dearly) in the above photo than I have in my whole life, I’ve lived in 3 different homes, I’ve learnt snippets of a very confusing language, I’ve visited castles, celebrated Danish traditions, seen winter turn to spring and made beautiful, wonderful friends who I care about so much more than I bargained for when I decided to come here for such a short amount of time. My time in Copenhagen has been a magical experience, but I wonder how I will remember it once I’m back in Australia?
This all reminded me of a collection of works I produced while I was studying at art school which I called ‘Post-travel Memory Distortion.’ (You can now see some of this body of work under the ‘Bodies of Work’ tab.) These artworks attempted to document my very first trip to Europe in a way which visualised the compression of memory over time. However, it’s only now, 4 years on, that I am able to really reflect on how successful these works were. Was that amazing coffee in Rome or Florence? Did we go into that bookshop in London or Paris? I have a memory which is pretty good at details like that, but these artworks do seem to illustrate the muddled confusion in my head when I think about this first trip. I wonder what Copenhagen will look like up there in 4 years, only time (and paint) will tell.
(My studio space at art school, a cosy table and easel in a building opposite Town Hall in Sydney, the very centre of the city – I’ll be very lucky to ever have such a perfectly positioned space again! Messier than I remembered, but I think this photo documents my art making process well.)
(This collection of work began as photographic collages in which I cut and relay printed photographs taken on my initial Europe trip. I liked how by keeping them within the frame of a regular printed photograph made the viewer double take the shot within it.)
(I then took the most successful of the photographic collages and translated them into acrylic paintings. I worked hard to keep the collage lines in tact and clear in these works but to create a smooth, finished piece. The slightly illustrative style of my painting worked to ‘blur the memories’ I was documenting which I was really pleased about. The number of steps I took to make these works allowed me to engage in a process of art-making I hadn’t tried before. I really enjoyed seeing my images evolve from one medium to the next.)