In 2013, Sara A.Tremblay went to Själsö, a town on the island of Gotland in Sweden, for an eighty-eight-day residency offered by the Brucebo Fine Art Foundation. During her stay, she produced an impressive mass of documentation, including photographs, videos, and objects, some made and others found, that were divided into different series in such a way as to testify to her experience in Sweden. Like so many mishaps that marked her passage, the moments captured by the artist reveal traces of the state of mind that guided discoveries and interventions during her nature outings in the environs. The images that she created were not only photographic and videographic, but also mental constructions and ephemeral arrangements that give a profoundly personal meaning to her discoveries. In this sense, Tremblay’s practice adopts the logics of dialogue, offering a degree of reciprocity in the exchanges made between humans and nature. These exchanges lead, ultimately, to the creation of a landscape, understood less as an appropriation than as a shared experiment.
Tremblay’s series 88 Days in Själsö and Éphémérides offer fragmented stagings of a landscape that takes shape in the viewer’s imagination but that, in the end, always remains a bit incomplete. With tight framings, the artist reassesses the photographer’s propensity to seek the overall view and presume a completed whole. Her black-and-white prints leave in suspense both time — it is impossible to determine a precise moment due to the absence of colour — and a hypothetical contextual culmination. In their presentation of banal details, they quietly express a private opinion, that of the artist, who infuses these elements with emotion and therefore makes them essential. These details are a record of a tangible walk, made realistic through the attention paid to them — an attention that continuously interrupts the exploration by transforming it into a constellation of experiences.
[Translated from the French by Käthe Roth]