INTERLOCUTION/S: HENRY SYMONDS

Interlocution: n. [ interlocutio < pp. of interloqui, to speak between < inter-, inter + loqui, to speak] an interchange of speech; conversation; dialogue.

I will not be a tourist in the world of images, just watching images passing by which I cannot live in, make love to, possess as permanent sources of joy and ecstasy (Nin, 1975).
I regard my visual research as an ongoing process of interlocution - each image an arrested moment in an ongoing visual dialogue - each one a fragment or pause in a complex continuous process of ‘speaking between’. Interlocution - the speaking between - demands a continuous process of translation, not in the sense that there is an original ‘text’ existing somewhere and that all translation will only ever be partial renderings or copies of the original, but rather translation as an unending process. Sarat Maharaj concludes that translation then is not so much “an exceptional moment in our lives but a condition of being and becoming” (2001, p. 279).

Stuart Hall has pointed out that only in myth would we find cultures and identities emerging “from nowhere, whole within themselves, perfectly self sufficient, unrelated to anything outside themselves, and with boundaries which secure their space from outside intrusion.” He concludes that “every text has a ‘before text’, every identity has its pre-identities” (2001, p.278).

Thus I intend my ‘interlocutions’ to translate or speak between the digital and the traditional, the decorative as decoration or coded narrative, the figurative and the abstract, the formal and the expressive. From one culture to another, one medium to another, one visual language to another. This process will always result in an ‘after text’ to extend Hall’s idea, which in turn becomes a new ‘before text’ as the process continues.

In translation there is always something left out - it always lacks something, makes you aware that there is always something untranslatable just as it might reveal, in that very lack, new insights and possibilities. There is always something new in a translation that is not in the original. A translation or mistranslation always ‘finds’ as well as ‘loses’ something in the process. It is in these infinite, incomplete chains of (mis)translation - these interlocutions - that I locate my practice and where I find interesting potentialities revealed.