This is time for us by Helen Greenwood
Time appears to flow persistently forward with regularity and order and yet can also seem to expand, contract and warp. In this booklet and poster series I explore how time can be structured and represented using the motions of the solar system and also how my own personal time has been shaped by love and loss.
This project started as I was approaching the one-year anniversary of my husband’s death from cancer and what began as project about structure and rivers, ended as a reflection on the structure of time and my relationship. I was drawn to metaphors of life and death in the river; I became interested in the markers of time in nature – the rise and fall of the tides and the movement of the sun and the stars; I read physics about how our constructs of time fall apart under examination. I wanted to capture these and my own reflections on the passing of time and how events from my relationship felt layered onto my present.
I chose to work with tide, moon phase, and sunlight hours data for London in the year following my husband’s death. Onto the structures formed by these data visualisations I plotted the anniversaries of significant events in our relationship. As the structure of time is dependent on the lens through which it is viewed, the series presents different layers and elements of the data. I also experimented with manipulating and blending the personal data beyond their defined boundaries to create more abstract pieces reflecting my own personal experience of time. In addition to digitally printing the booklet and posters I handprinted versions of the data visualisation using screen print.