Fettgerüst (2014-15) features 169 colour photographs installed in a grid that occupies an entire double-height wall of the gallery. Each image depicts a Fogo Island sunset, creating a monumental wall of fragments of the sky, yet none serve to capture the immensity and experience of the real natural phenomenon. Devoid of a frame of reference or identifying context, Fettgerüst offers a structured gaze over an infinitely repeating experience.
Just as any photograph is an intentional framing of one view over another, allowing the photographer to construct a form of reality, so too its interpretation is influenced by the viewer’s subjective experience and knowledge. Rough Form (2014) is a series of 32 photographic collages depicting rock formations on Fogo Island, eight of which are presented in the exhibition. Each collage superimposes a black and white print onto an inverted colour print of the same image. The resulting composite images are bereft of scale, and evoke a desire to see within each rock formation some recognizable form or pattern, to impose a human reading upon the natural world.
The large-scale colour photograph A Scene in a Library (2014) depicts a bookshelf replete with bound manuscripts, stacked papers, artefacts and mementoes. Yet what appears as a deeply personal collection is in fact a staged, artificial arrangement: a composite image sewn together from multiple analogue and digital sources. Objects within the image offer clues to be deciphered, such as references to the birth of photography and the nature of seeing, raising questions on perception as a cognitive act.
Lastly, Leciejewski’s Rockets (2014-15) are three-dimensional forms assembled from pieces of broken glass and crockery found on the shores of Fogo Island. As sculptures, the Rockets at once evoke social and material histories of island communities read through 150-year old shards, while taking on a new identity as constructed objects with possible futures.
Tones draws together multiple interpretations of natural elements, where the physical act of seeing is simultaneously a construction of reality, a making of the world.