Photo Credit: Sophie Warren & Jonathan Mosley
WAS HERE appropriates the language of graffiti; the simple act of inscribing ones own name on a surface, and translates the personal to the architectural. The words WAS HERE are written on the wall of a new house which at the time overlooked an empty plot, now covered by a development of terrace housing. The lack of a pronoun asks the passerby 'who or what was here?' The WAS HERE text offers up some melancholic reflection on the process of architectural production itself. It refers to some past presence eradicated by the architectural process, that the text relates to the history of the site, to the 'who?' and 'what?' was here before the house was built. But equally, the text confronts us with its own imminent absence, the possibility of the disappearance of the blank façade by future development. Here the past, present and future collide. The past tense statement infers a future disappearance and also draws attention to the time of viewing and the transitory nature of the present appearance of things. WAS HERE, the writing on the wall, expresses an anxiety which reflects on our own sense of identity and the desire to make a permanent register of presence in the world.
43cm x 350cm
Black and white emulsion paint
Architecture & environment