Many photographs were taken when I was installing the waterwheels to provide material for showing with the installation. I was committed to showing a record of the historical event of the paddles being installed and turning in the water as this was the culmination of all my work. An action-based set of images were important to show the physicality of the event, of the attachment of the engineered components to the land and I guess of my own final connection with the river.
The photographic sequence below is a fluid summary of the stages I went through of threading, securing, aligning, testing, and positioning. I chose them specifically because they show action taking place, culminating in the final piece in the river. 6 photographs will provide a symmetrical group when printed and black and white have a historical aesthetic as it’s important that this emphasises that the event occurred in the past. I want the viewer’s eyes to flit between the images and the physical paddles and have the satisfaction in joining the past to the present. Their level of engagement with the paddles will then increase, they will study the engineering, they will see the remnants of mud and waterweed and realize that this installation has a purpose, time, and geography attached to it.
Summary & next steps
Printing and mounting of the photographs is the next step. I have previously used Foamex for mounting photographs, raised off the gallery wall but I wonder if this would break the informality of the rest of the installation so I will investigate other options.