The Passing of Time, Caught in a Single Photo

23 September 2019

Stephen Wilkes in “The Passing of Time, Caught in a Single Photo”:

Einstein described time as a fabric. Think of the surface of a trampoline: it warps and stretches with gravity.

I see time as a fabric as well, except I take that fabric and flatten it, compress it into a single plane. One of the unique aspects of this work is also, if you look at all my pictures, the time vector changes: sometimes I'll go left to right, sometimes front to back, up or down, even diagonally. I am exploring the space-time continuum within a two-dimensional still photograph.

[…] I build a photograph based on time. […]

I'm compressing the day and night as I saw it, creating a unique harmony between these two very discordant worlds.

[…] Time is this extraordinary thing that we never can really wrap our heads around. But in a very unique and special way, I believe these photographs begin to put a face on time. They embody a new metaphysical visual reality. […]

I realised that Day to Night is really a new way of seeing.

I watched over 15 hours all these people not even look at Sacré-Coeur. They were more interested in using it as a backdrop. They would walk up, take a picture, and then walk away. And I found this to be an absolutely extraordinary example, a powerful disconnect between what we think the human experience is versus what the human experience is evolving into. The act of sharing has suddenly become more important than the experience itself.

[Near a watering hole in the Serengeti National Park in Tanzania] What I witnessed was unimaginable. Frankly, it was biblical. We saw, for 26 hours, all these competitive species share a single resource called water. The same resource that humanity is supposed to have wars over during the next 50 years. The animals never even grunted at each other. They seem to understand something that we humans don't. That this precious resource called water is something we all have to share.