Izabela Pluta’s new exhibition, Figures of slippage and oscillation, explores the assumptions around how place is depicted and perceived. The main component of her installation includes 60 paper negatives that have been made by employing a camera-less process of contact printing full-page relief maps from three different editions of an out-of-date atlas. What eventuates is a visual collapse of states, territories and geographical names that blurs the distinction between the land masses, their coordinates and the political entities that govern them. While conceptually anchored in Pluta’s experience as a Polish migrant to Australia, the artist’s process of dislocating the features of each map also proposes a critique of the procedures of colonialism, its related hegemonic discourses and the effects of globalisation.
Pluta’s working method explores how things come together and draws largely on finding, fragmenting, translating and reconfiguring materials that are both photographed and found. In this new work the process and structure of making photographs is born out of the absence and presence of light and its reaction to the material surface of the pages of a superseded map.
The accompanying component of this new work–and around which this project was conceived–is a piece of audio which charts places travelled. This monologue is played in random order, and describes a chronical of movement around the world in an account of recollection and memoir: of places called on, experienced and occasionally forgotten.