Thursday, May 17, 2012

Sign of Four on the Beach

This is one from the archives and was a quick scan of a print. But somehow it always hangs around and peeps out to haunt me. These were the actual colours and this was a colour print, although it looks sepia. It reminds me of difficult photography in a lovely windswept place, where even a tripod was unstable. Norfolk is one of my favourite English counties. Peter Greenaway uses it frequently for film locations and I can see why. The landscape and the sea lend the place a sense of otherness that is haunting. The people have assembled into what might be called an echo in photography. The two people in the foreground make the echo further out on the beach. But together they make four and that is symbolically interesting. Four has been around as a symbol since prehistory as something particularly solid. Later it was associated with the square and of course, the cross. The list of fours is long, corners of the earth, four winds, four seasons and so on. If you're a Star Trek fan , you may recall the division of the known galaxies into quadrants. Four is universal and may also refer to completion. Jung believed the archetypal basis of the human psyche was a quaternity composed of thought, feeling, intuition and sensation. Now that is a matter for a whole series of blogs

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

At the Lights

I was headed to see my own psychotherapist, when I passed the traffic lights and saw this man at work. In a past life I used to have small specialism in such pictures of people at work. In general we just expect things to work normally as normal - and we seldom notice the people who perform maintenance. We do notice when the lights don't work though! Then we complain bitterly, especially of there's a policeman temporarily directing the traffic. That single officer can't possibly imitate the sequence of computerised systems and jams often occur! What about the light though? Without the light there would be darkness. Earth appoints the darkness and heaven the light, states Master Eckhart. Light is associated with ascension and euphoria whereas darkness is all about depression and anxiety. Without traffic lights thought, there could be chaos and that is a state of existence that we don't like to acknowledge. Chaos precedes creation and in psychoanalysis it precedes even the unconscious. Shapeless and ultimately passive, it could be also be said of that old traffic gridlock.