Tuesday, April 20, 2010
The Only Thing Separating You From Everything Else is Time is an exhibition of photographs which draw from the experience of taking the Trans-Siberian Railroad - the longest continuous rail line in the world. Though the geography and composition of the train's interior was in a state of constant flux, time emerged as the only measure from the outside world that remained relevant. Time – and the concepts of distance and speed inherently bound to it – became the most succinct connector between the body, other objects and passengers enclosed within the train, and the ever-changing external environment outside of it. Train travel complicated the traditional notion of linear time, fragmenting the concept into perceived (biological) time, actual (local) time, and train time (train schedules were always noted in Moscow time). The resulting images contextualize the formation of spatial and philosophical relationships between objects through these kaleidoscopic definitions.
The photographs within the exhibition look to find universal commonalities between objects and behaviors. Images made during the journey are presented within a larger continuum of events that occurred before and after, further exploring temporality as a unifying factor across varying contexts of everyday experience. In creating a disparate network of documents that are tenuously and temporally related, the viewer is encouraged to uncover hidden meanings, forge unexpected connections, and construct a variety of conclusions.
Born in Kalamazoo, Michigan, Jennifer Mao now lives and works in Seattle. She will be graduating this spring from the University of Washington with degrees in Photography and Psychology. She is interested in anything and everything, including but not limited to: everyday magic, chain reactions among things and people, and pictures of cats on the internet.