A chat with Claire


How do you begin your process of making the digital spaces you create?

Like with all the work I do I tend to start by giving myself certain rules about how the space should be constructed or look, so that the aesthetic of the work is defined by certain parameters. I usually begin constructing the spaces using these rules and at some point in the making I stop and go back and try and change the space and break away from the rules so that something more interesting comes out. I think in the final work the original structure I set out for myself is still visible and what I intended to create is there but it has evolved into something more free and dynamic. And always the original work then inspires many other pieces and a body of work develops.

Are any of the rooms or spaces derived from your own memory or are they completely imagined?

No they’re not derived from spaces specific to my own memory but rather I wanted them to be spaces familiar to everyone in an uncanny sort of way. Not necessarily just from people’s memory but from our experience of being within domestic structures, in the pieces I have made recently I was thinking a lot about the conventions of the layout and decoration of domestic spaces, specific to British houses since that it was I have a connection and familiarity with in my life. It’s less about memory and more about experience of spaces.

What do you want your audience to experience when navigating through the digital rooms?

A familiarity yet unfamiliarity; a reality yet an artificiality; a warping of size/shape of spaces, surfaces and objects recognisable to us from the physical world. An uncanniness.

In having the two views of the split screen I wanted the viewer to experience the two images merging into one another, the lines and patterns connecting to make a sort of collage of the the subject I am exploring (the domestic space)

What things or experiences are currently influencing the work you are making?

The city is the main thing or experience that is influencing all of my practice in some way or another of late. I know that ‘the city’ is quite a general statement to make because any artist making work in a particular place will find their work becoming inherently influenced by the place based on the aesthetics, people and culture surrounding them. But more specifically for me it is the structure of the city that is influencing my interests and research, and therefore has fed into the work I make. The city for me is a mass network of manmade structures and pathways, like a giant maze, which millions of bodies inhabit and navigate through. I am interested in the body’s movement within the structure of the city.

My experience of being in the city has developed into an interest in grid structures, and all the grid structures that exist within the network of the city. Grids exist in the structure of the city, in architecture (houses and public buildings), in all 2D information we see (posters, newspapers etc), and in the digital realm. There is a focus in my work to the relationship between the physical and the digital, and with grid structures at the basis of my thinking I have been exploring the cross over between 2D and 3D in structures we inhabit both digitally and physically.

What ideas at the moment are you finding interesting to work with when creating art?

When thinking about the actual layout of the work I have been thinking a lot about collage. In my video works I have been thinking about how collage in video is used, by layering and combining the images within the video pieces. I think collage in digital work is something that is very prevalent in work being made by current visual artists, in the use of multiscreen video works and multi-sense installations using video, sculpture and sound in a way that is like collage. For me collage on a screen is something that I am really interested, the way images can be layered and pieced together to create a collage that actually physically remains as one same layer because it exists only within the layer of the screen and has no physical depth.

The perspective shown in both of your videos stray away from the conventional flat way of viewing things, what was your intention behind this?

I think my intention was to give angles with the camera view that give part of the information I want; like with collage I could then piece the information together to create a whole view. I imagine that all my different pieces of work combine together to create a collage of my ideas and of what I am trying to express to the viewer. And as I continue to make work the collage will be built upon to reveal more information.