Tethered is an ongoing investigation into the tethering effect we experience in our everyday lives. It communicates this feeling by portraying what a specific period of time (e.g. 2:00pm-4:00pm) visually looks like when compressed and juxtaposed from different days of the week.
Using a mathematical formula, each print illustrates what a two hour period of time looks like as I balance artist, mother, teacher, wife, and daughter throughout the week.
As unique as each two-hour interval is, certain consistencies also run through our scheduled days. The look and feel of a two hour period in the morning versus a two hour period in the afternoon conveys a very different set of characters, circumstances, interactions, responsibilities, and roles. In comparison to today, past generations whether by choice or not were very segregated — work and family life rarely converged.
However with technology today, work can be at home, and while working we can video chat with our family. With the advent of smart phones and mobile devices, we can now check emails and essentially be wired-in 24/7 anywhere in the world.
It is through these technological advances that our lives have become more confused, intermingled, and merged — thus creating the tethering effect.
As a mom of two toddlers, my time is always split between being an artist, a mother, a wife, and a teacher. On Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, I am in my studio or classroom “being a teacher or artist”, but on Tuesdays, Thursdays and weekends, I am home being a mother and wife. This is the supposed “schedule”. However, this is never the case.
We all have similar lives, you do not have to be a mother, or a woman to appreciate the fusing and invasion of time that technology plays on us all.
Pulling from thousands of images, I chose four to six images from the same time of day but from different days of the week. Once selected, I digitally break down those images into vertical slices. I then reintegrate the vertical slices from the four to six images through a mathematical formula, to create a single, compressed image of time. Once compressed, and as in real life, all the the different events and interactions inevitably merge into a singular life experience.
In its completed form, Tethered is a combination of archival digital prints mounted on panels, video and sound installations.
— H Jennings Sheffield