Symmetrium

“I had in mind to create what a photograph cannot be. Free of the past, abstract, and a first-time image, only connected to present that it represents. Like the idea of an experience of counting and experiencing a space. I wanted the photograph to have its own present, always open. Symmetrium works are about being.”

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In my Symmetrium series (2009) I focuses on the spatiality of time, order and color. The works included in this series have thousands of organised straight and curved lines of colored light. The aim was to get the maximum out of my instrument; the camera and film and also to slow down the photograph. I tried to stretch the borders of how far the photo­graphic negative can be pushed in regards to information absorbed. To reduce my photographic process into the essentials, to light, light sensitive materials and lens to control the qualities of light, I dove into process of slowly built visual mantras. These multiple exposed negatives have thousands of exposures. In my Symmetrium series I use light, as a painter would layer colors, in developing the depth behind the surface of the image either building it up from the center of the film to the edges or from edges to the center. It is no longer just a picture, but a blueprint for a process of thinking and counting.

“The composer Philip Glass once remarked that ‘music was a place and that once you have been there you could always find your way back.’ The same could be said for Luoma’s photographs. Each work is a world of its own, one that shares a mutual language in the event of its own becoming. There is no one way of per­ceiving these pictures since they can begin anywhere and have no ending. They are system-based experiments where the negative becomes a record for its own realisation and the final photograph as their own museums of time.”

The impression of depth and three dimensionality is something that photography always flirts with. It compresses what it sees into flat surface. The starting point or the plan and idea of each Symmetrium work is based on two-dimensionality, on height and length. There is no depth in the beginning since there is only one line. By the repetition and layering, the depth slowly appears and is always more of the result of chance than aim. The Symmetrium series borrows from the musical composition strategies, where singular events are arranged into systematic order that creates the visual entity but also to define the experience of space. Eline Radigue and Alvin Lucier were important sources of inspiration. Their compositions are measures of layered time and space and explore acoustic phenomena and auditory perception. The Symmetrium works are visualisations of collateral experiences of being in time and space. The works are also free from the gravitational direction. They can be installed either vertically, horizontally, or even diagonally depending on the space in which they will be hung.