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Art Works: Trace by Trish Evans

22 December 11 words: Trish Evans

"I’m one of those people who loves really rubbish-looking architecture, boarded-up buildings and decaying concrete"

This photograph captures eight seconds in time in November 2011, portraying the flow and navigation of three traceurs (freerunners) within a crumbling industrial building close to the Canal, taken at night, with the assistance of a full moon. To me, this image is symbolic of freedom, inquisitive playfulness and the reinvention of forgotten, once-thriving spaces.

My work has never been overtly academic and my approach has always been crudely simple; I attached LED lights to the traceurs’ legs and arms, and took long exposure shots to capture their movement and interaction with the immediate environment. The actual building is in a state of slow collapse and only still stands due to an internal body of scaffold, which is surrounded by an immense overgrowth of weeds. I had to trespass over dodgy old walls, boulders and through undergrowth in pitch black to take the shot.

I’m inspired by artists who reinvent or see the beauty of unremarkable ‘things’, and street-based art which doesn’t need to be explained and doesn’t need to be accessed - it’s just impressively simple and just there. I’m also one of those people who loves really rubbish-looking architecture, boarded-up buildings and decaying concrete.

I studied in art and design, with a degree at Trent in Furniture and Product Design and from then on I have delivered and developed a whole host of contemporary arts projects, events and programmes. With a young family and a number of other freelance projects and work commitments, all of my photography is evening-based - usually after the kids are in bed, which is OK with a very considerate husband. But I also project manage the event, which requires extensive planning, partnership work, fundraising, PR, etc. But, to be honest, I thrive on being busy and being creative.

This particular image is a work in progress for an installation called TRACE. This has been commissioned for Light Night in Nottingham on 10 February 2012, and will include projections ofmy photography and with film, sound and parkour in collaboration with a whole host of digital media and sonic artists. It’s an expansion on a previous installation I did last year (pipeline: they came running), but the themes this time focus more specifically on the reinvention of abandoned spaces such as old industrial units, closed petrol stations and rooftops to convey a relationship and comparative existence. It’ll take place in an underpass, next to the Broadmarsh Centre and Maid Marian Way, under an NCP car park; a shining example of a disused and forgotten pocket of the city that has been adopted by the parkour community as a playground ripe for exploring and given new meaning.

As for future projects, I recently did a shoot with the parkour community in Berlin, and there is talk of taking our TRACE shoot to Paris. If funds and time were available to definitely say that these ideas could happen, that would be truly amazing. Perhaps they will…

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