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The focus of my studio work has been a set of family photographs recently discovered after my father’s sudden death. This has led to discussions about the key issues of identity, memory, family and culture. In my studio practice I have been investigating the metaphoric translation of empirical and subjective sensory data. The empirical sensory data takes the form of photographs and cultural products, such as graphic material and mediated programmes from the 1960s, and the subjective data is the realm of memory. The archaeological processes I have used in excavating these memories have induced physical sensory experiences. In my studio work I have sought to create a visual language system, that of the mediated and experiential culture of my upbringing, creating a synesthetic objectification of these experiences and memories. I believe that this physical remembering is the bridge in time between both the empirical and subjective evidence of a past moment, and the inspiration for the creation of an artwork, and that it is a synesthetic experience. This involves the translation of stored cerebral facts and descriptions of events and places into tactile sensory information in the present, such as colour, texture, shape, graphic layering and visual noise. This has involved research into metaphor, abstract thought and neurobiology for application to studio arts practices.


Autobiographical narrative




The sociology of the photograph

Cultural Products


Shāna Carlan-Riddell
Paradise Valley
RD2, Rotorua
New Zealand
Phone +64 (07) 350-2114
Mobile +64 027 659-6538