I am a collector.
I collect things.
I collect memories.
Everyone collects things.
Everyone collects memories.
Things become anchors for memories.
Insignificant things become precious.
People create to express many things: joy, grief, discovery, boredom, excitement, memories, and so the list goes on and on. It is in our very nature to collect, curate and create the world around us.
These stones were collected and photographed ten years ago, since then they have been filed away in a cupboard. For me they are a strong anchor to a time of grief and loss, when walking on the beach and collecting stones became my daily ritual and lifeline. This difficult period of life lasted for eight years. Over this time the beach and collecting precious things, noticing marks, colours and shapes became an integral part of everyday life and an anchor for hope.
The human race have had a special relationship with stones over the millennia – many different cultures have responded to the solidity and permanence of the form by creating memorials using them to mark an occasion, to honor the deceased, or to simply remember.
Through this installation I have chosen to consider the strange place that grief and loss can take you to. It can feel like a bubble has formed around you, muffling the senses and making the real world seem one step removed.
Using the photographs of stones rather than the real thing enables something of that otherness to be present, and at the same time bringing an order, a sense of stillness and a quiet serenity to the space.
Sarah Grace Harris