My PhD explored the relation between the operation of photography and that of remembrance – drawing on ideas from Barthes, Proust and Lacan. Part way through my research I came across the linguistic theorist Ann Banfield, whose work proposes that sentence structure in the novel changed after the invention of photography. Banfield identifies sentences that are ‘unspeakable’, partly because they can occur only in novelistic writing, but also because they exclude the “I” (the first person). The italicised sections of Virginia Wool’s The Waves are good examples of these kinds of sentences. As a result of this discovery I added Woolf, Flaubert, Joyce and W. G. Sebald to my reading list, and shifted my attention from theory to the novels themselves. My practice also altered; I exchanged photography and video for a kind of automatic drawing or casting – generated by digital recoding processes and output in various media including tapestry, inkjet and more recently 3D printing.

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