2014 Slow Motion
We have reached the epoch of the nanosecond,” wrote James Gleick in Faster (1999). “An age when instantaneity rules in the network and in our emotional lives: instant coffee, instant intimacy, instant replay, and instant gratification.” That much is obvious. We know that Western civilization is speeding up, dancing to the accelerating beat of technological progress: ….our technology becomes continually faster and, as a consequence, working days are being sliced into ever slimmer tranches – ninety seconds in the shower, five minutes for lunch (at your desk), ten minutes ‘face-time’ after an hour’s emailing. As Milan Kundera has noted: ‘Speed is the form of ecstasy the technological revolution has bestowed upon man.’ Pleasure has been supplanted by efficiency….
Put it like that, and it’s amazing that in these digital days, art….still exists. But then artists have hardly been immune to the pace of change….But sprinting alongside the postindustrial world isn’t the only option....An alternative possibility presents itself, making art which travels, by comparison, in slow motion; which nudges persistently rather than hitting like a flatbed truck. These works unfold over time and transport the viewer slowly, in a straight line or in a circle, either leaving one thinking that the journey is its own reward, or not….this work….demands a particular pitch of attention, and….rewards that attention.
Painting is a slow medium. It takes time to do….and time to look at.
From Slow Motion by Martin Herbert.