A Sense of Someplace began during my Visual Artist residency with NHS Forth Valley Hospital, Scotland in 2011. Part of my arts residency was socially engaged and I wanted to use existing photographic material as a starting point for working with narrative. I started to collect anonymous 35mm slides and taking them apart by hand and seeing how I could rework them. As I began to pair them and look at them in the projector, I discovered fantastical scenes and seemingly impossible places. I brought this collage approach to the found 35mm slides for a year making images and made a publication called ‘A Sense of Someplace’.
My residency ended in October 2013. I turned to other art projects for several years, my tools often being digitally based or away from my studio. But I continued to collect anonymous 35mm slides, but they were unopened. I found myself yearning to sit in my studio and explore the untouched slide collection I had. Each slide, however stoic or fascinating has a singularity. But when I find a marriage with another, a new story or reality, I feel like Alice falling into the looking glass. I fall into an ‘other’ and thats rather intoxicating, as is the analogue nature of working this way. So I dedicated half my studio space to 35mm projectors (I have 6 now) , light boxes (I have 4 now) and vintage scanners (I have 5 now) and started creating these images once more.
Everyone sees different stories in these images, and sometimes it takes several views to find out what doesn’t seem ‘quite right’. Some are oddly beguiling and others unsettle but we can’t stop looking. All of them are made from two timelines, two places to make a new story.
Lindsay Perth is based in Edinburgh, Scotland.