This book is subset of 250 macro photographs from a large project I did for the University of the Arts London in 2010, recording marks across all the UAL campuses both from finished work in degree shows and from found marks across the colleges. The work is thus a collection of intentional and accidental marks and is presented in a format inspired by microscope slides and traditional microscope slide holders, now less and less in use as scientific imaging is largely digital. Many marks included in the work would not traditionally be associated with painting: marks on whiteboards, pin holes in notice boards, scratches on tables, embroidery, chisel marks in stone, fingerprints in clay. In the book, the ‘slides’ are often organised by colour, which encourages the viewer to concentrate on the quality of the mark. But inevitably the eye is drawn to the beauty and subtle variations in these ‘found’ colours. The colour sets up its own dialogue across each page and from page to page even though colour is entirely incidental to the project. None of these colours reflect a decision on my part, they are as they were found.
This piece explores the futility of a pseudo-scientific methodology of cataloguing and archiving and questions the romantic notion of the ‘hand of the artist’.