Nostalgic Geography

Mama and Papa have Trains, Orchards and Mountains in their Backyard

Responding to the recent passing of my beloved father, the artwork features an array of digital, corporeal and immersive provocations and embodied ways of situating personal narrative, grief and the process of loss. 

Looking to the land and its living and non-living materials for direction.

The installation of 7 videos is a meditation on the presence and absence of memory embedded in the landscape – retrieved through the invocation of sound, text, material and moving image using extraction technologies like drones and smartphones.

Found remnants of agriculture and rail transport, like specters of a different place and time, form a part of the installation. Five fruits trees transform from vibrant to wilted throughout the exhibition, producing a subtle smell of decaying apples.

Layered, ambient sound creates an eerie quality evocative of squealing metal under hot railroad tracks, produced with minor-key vocalizations and the lonely field recordings of birds, wind and weather. A discreet sound piece experienced through headphones includes archival footage of prOphecy’s father, brother and daughter.

Two didactic wall texts activate a dialogue between the terms nostalgic and geography, and their implicit tensions. One combines ten years of family stories into a narrative about harvesting potatoes. Beside it sits a long list of 43 possible adjectives to describe geography. The polarity in tone between the two texts makes explicit the tension between personal and political that exists in the exhibition’s content and title.

created by prOphecy sun and Darren Fleet
shown at Oxygen Art Centre, Nelson, BC
supported by Canada Council for the Arts