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Capti Punctum: 46 Universal Singularities (2021- )

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Mythographic space is discontinuous. In maps, geography is situated relative to other geography, elements subject to calculations, breadth, length, and proportion. These are standardized spaces. In mythography, however, geography functions primarily to fit the deeds of individuals: fluid spaces that reflect the nature of humanity. In our own time, human-natural mythography is at a critical juncture, for transitioning human understanding of this planet from a robust Spaceship Earth to a fragile cocoon subject to the deeds of humanity will necessarily require us to create a new understanding of our own space. Such a task will involve both outward and inward examination by every individual.

Mythographic examinations of the self are not unique to our era, for Kamo no Chomei in 1212 offered insights into his own journey toward the within, noting that while the current of the river never ceases, always flowing, it is never the same river; the experience of human society can be considered similar to that observation. And yet, we share the same river, awash in our own shared environment. In his own search, Nietzsche suggested the chaos of existence has no meaning, while Sartre proposed the “we” of society is in perpetual conflict for meaning. Thus, the I also remains in constant flux, the individual afloat in a current of redefinition by the greater influence of humanity.

The We and I of human existence and meaning is easily seen, however: the river, the environment, is inevitably our meaning, for without it, there is nothing. Nature is inexorably embroiled in the human contest for We and I, most recently resulting in a climactic turmoil generated by the human conundrum and fostering a unique mythography of our time. Once seen by Japanese artists as perpetual, the timelessness of the natural is now drawn into question by the human industrial impetus of the modern world. In this series of 46 archival pigment photographs on Japanese Unryu natural fiber washi paper, I make visible the mythographic tension between these forces, examining the role of self and connection, fragility and landscape, turmoil and humanity, journey and understanding.