Having made moving still life video sketches around my own home, I wanted to explore the architectural domestic ‘dwelling’ space from the perspective of structure; as an abstract, symbolic space.

Poltimore House, near Exeter, is a Grade II* listed manor house dating from 1086. Entombed beneath a new steel roof, the house is held in a kind of limbo while further funding is found for renovations. The site was relevant to me in terms of it being an architectural ‘still-life’, and also as an imagined, almost Platonic ‘ideal form’ of a residential dwelling place.

As the basis for an analysis of architectural space, Poltimore was considered in relation to my own familiar, domestic interior, and was a way of looking out to look back within. In this analysis, psychological boundaries can be crossed in a palpable, physical way and the architectural space, with light penetrating its apertures and interior, becomes a spatial meta-language for this affective crossing of mental and physical boundaries. It became a place for metaphorising the mental processes of projection and introjection (how I project onto the world and the world into me). In this way, interior and exterior (walls, windows, and doors) exchange places, and even the interior structures (stairs) become thresholds between physical planes and mental states.

‘Outside and inside are both intimate – they are always ready to be reversed, to exchange their hostility. If there exists a border-line surface between such an inside and outside, this surface is painful on both sides’.1

Gaston Bachelard in The Poetics of Space
(Bachelard 1994: 218)

Poltimore is in a condition of ruin – ravaged by the weather and vandalism – but the house resonates with a relaxed air of resignation as it hovers between dereliction and salvation; echoing the human condition.

These clips attempt to evoke this state between states, how time exchanges itself with space, in familiar and unfamiliar places, and as work continues to save the fabric of its (and maybe our) being.

video clip
still image - installation view

video clip
still image - installation view

video clip
familiar interior


1 Bachelard, G (1994) The Poetics of Space, trans. Stilgoe, J R, New York: Beacon Press