Night Sightings

We cannot see what isn’t illuminated, yet we all read different things into darkness and what we cannot see. It becomes the space where the unknown and unproven reside. Our response to what we can’t or don’t see can be most revealing, a vehicle for our dreams and our anxieties.

Living in Mpumalanga offers plenty of chances to travel on dirt roads at night. I feel soothed in remote places, where the night is darker. When I first experienced night game drives I found myself overlooking the lions and studying the way the spotlight burnt out the lit areas and increased the sense of mystery in the dark. Peering into the darkness, shining a spotlight on things connects with something primal in us.

The medium, starting with a dark plate and using a subtraction process, an accumulation of thousands of deliberate marks to coax the light coming from the light-box, was eerily akin to the idea behind these images. The single light source in the images coming from behind the viewer, challenged my knowledge of how to represent landscape, encouraging me to find new ways of seeing and drawing these lithographs.