Isles of Grain

A Collaboration between Frank Watson and Dave Lawrence

If you can't see the film clip above, please click here.


There has been much interest recently in the relationship between stillness and photography but with little mention of the way stillness might also refer to quietness or silence. Unlike the history of cinema, which developed by synchronising sound and vision, photography’s arrested development meant that it continued to view the world mute and still.

As part of the exhibition ‘Soundings From The Estuary’ Frank Watson and Dave Lawrence have collaborated to reintroduce sound back into the photograph in a way that challenges the photograph’s muteness and the way photographic space is negotiated.

The video shown here examines the way the photograph might be reanimated incorporating the use of both ambient and composed sound. This in turn engages with the idea of listening to images by reclaiming what might have become omitted by the medium.

The sounds composed by sonic artist, Dave Lawrence are inspired by the experience of visiting the sites of the photographs. This involves taking sampled sounds from the estuary as well as generating sound in the studio to recreate a sense of not being in the landscape but in the photograph of the landscape.

The photographs by Frank Watson have been animated in such a way that the photographic surface is translated into something that can be read sonically, the photograph as musical score.