J. Michael Simpson artist

No Place In Time

On My Work

The technology of digital video offers a power to re-experience a past moment in time in extraordinary detail.  We not only can experience any recorded moment over and over again, we can also refer to it by name. Any given frame of video comes with its own time stamp and GPS coordinates; a cerebral stand-in for that exact moment and place. These technologies have become so prevalent in our lives that they have become simulacrum for real life experiencing. In that the copy becomes more real than the real, these technologies collapse the past into the present. 

To explore this power in my art I chose a subject that cannot be stilled by the naked eye, the surface turbulence of a white-water river. Using digital video, the tumult of a nearby river is recorded at specific sites along its course. The clips of the turbulence are edited into stop-action videos and split-second stills that essentially extract a moment in time during the downstream trek of the river. art work . These multimedia works, stripped of the visual depictions of a place, re-phrase the energy of a moment and suspend it in a time of its own between a past and a present.