When thinking of translation, it may be tempting to perceive it as the process of transposing a text from one language to another, to see it as limited to foreign languages. As far as I’m concerned, most of us constantly live in translation. I am not talking about the ever-expanding group of nomadic radicants1 that are constantly in motion and become bilingual by necessity; I am talking of most of us, who constantly- perhaps even unconsciously- translate, mediating between our thoughts and the way we choose to express them, between the way we perceive ourselves to be and the way such perception is presented, interpreted, externalised for all to see.
If we understand translation to be a process through which the form is altered but the meaning is maintained, then we can see that, at least to some extent, artists work along the same lines as translators, finding a visual form for their thoughts and perceptions, exteriorising them and allowing the audience to decode them- translate them- and form a meaning they deem to be valid.
Most of my work revolves around the idea of translation. It touches upon memory and the way it edits, alters or deletes events; it follows interpreters in their task of translating and shifting between languages; it exposes the gaps within language and its intrinsic instability; it describes the process of translating oneself into a new, different persona.
I work in a variety of media; I work from external sources as well as original script. Most of the time I work alone, but I sometimes embark on collaborations. I grew up bilingual and became a traveller by choice. I think translation is a necessary evil, and yet I am fascinated by it. I am in the constant process of translating, visually and verbally, two-way.
1- Cfr Nicholas Bourriaud, The Radicant