‘How exquisite to re-see the essence of life’- Jay Griffiths, Gas Gallery Aberystwyth 2015
The Drop in the Ocean installation is intended to offer a space for contemplation about water, as well as being an anchor for the walking performance that circles around it. Built around a 5 metre circular labyrinth of sea shingle from Aberystwyth, with accompanying water ‘stations’, each element of the installation invites you to interact with water: walk, listen, ponder, pour, reflect, wish.
Drop in the Ocean was first installed at All Saints Church, Hereford (h.Energy week, 14-20 October 2013). It was later developed into a two-floor installation at Celf Ceredigion Oriel Nwy | Gas Gallery, Aberystwyth (29 April-5 May 2015). The second installation was expanded to include two, 5 metre labyrinths and additional ‘stations’. In the upstairs gallery space, was a looped installation of spin-off transnational film project Dropped in the Ocean (with Bronwyn Preece, Canada), accompanied by a sea of plastic bottles washed up on local beaches over the preceding months and collected by marine conservation activists Aberystwyth Beach Buddies. In the stairwell space linking both pieces was a multi-media collaboration with local artist Jane Lloyd-Francis, part of her ongoing series of work about wells Ffynhonnell. It included a new film-sound work produced by Sara Penrhyn Jones.
To acknowledge the walking performance that circles around it, the gallery installation(s) include a map onto which the routes walked each day are drawn, along with tags which record each day’s wishing encounters, pinned on the map to indicate where they took place. These accumulate over the course of the performance, along with a (dirty) washing line for each day’s walking socks.
Visitors to the installation are invited to walk through the labyrinth(s) accompanied by an audio soundscape of water. There are seven tracks, an edited selection of which is given below.
A selection of images from both installations at Hereford and Aberystwyth is given below. For a full set of images please visit the gallery.
All the installation woodwork was brilliantly and beautifully constructed from reclaimed wood by Paul Richardson of Canvas Craft.
Drop in the Ocean at All Saints Church, Hereford, October 2013:
Drop in the Ocean at Oriel Nwy | Gas Gallery, Aberystwyth, April-May 2015: