Half way through the second year of my PhD and this is the network of practice based work that I’ve done. Although there is not much that has resolved into ‘final’ pieces of work there is a lot of research material and fieldwork, a lot of process, and there are key moments where it comes together as both locative art work and mobilities social research. I prepared these images for a supervision meeting yesterday which was really useful, both to get feedback but also to look at it as a body of work. I was struck by the way that the black and white linear image,  which is a still from the comob software while I was walking from Huddersfield to Lancaster, works together with the photograph of a dead bird by the side of the road. In this work ‘Walking to Work’ I struggled with the tension between the abstraction of the comob image and the narrative of photographs and twitter posts. The work was never intended to be a travelogue, however compelling they are when they’re live. It was about a kind of virtual proximity, what I call ‘co-mobility’, feeling the presence of other people even when they are at a distance and on the move. What emerged in a discussion as I arrived in Lancaster on the last day was that the abstract images suggested a set of connections that could be imagined running between specific points up and down the country and across the world, like a visualisation of satellites, footpaths, pylons, wifi connections, friendships, mobile networks and acquaintances. During the walk these images had only ever been shown superimposed on top of a map. I’m considering using just the abstract connections next time, perhaps with live updating photographic fragments, like this dead bird by the side of the road. The connection between the fragment and the network, detail and abstraction suggests the tension between two visual perspectives that googlemaps doesn’t.

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