Galena Sardamova, My Bedroom Windows: An Ode to (Con)temporary Homes, 2019. Screen print on silk, installation.
My Bedroom Windows: An Ode to (Con)temporary Homes explores the idea of a shifting home, capturing the complex beauty of simultaneously belonging to everywhere and nowhere. The installation is comprised of photographs of bedroom windows I’ve had throughout the years screen printed on silk, arranged one in front of the other and with light shone though them. The spacing between the sheets of silk represents how much time I’ve spent living in each bedroom, or in other words, looking through that window.
When suspended in the air, I found that there is a unique dynamic stillness to silk. The delicacy of the material conveys the tenderness and fragility that characterize the literal state of being ungrounded. The shadows formed when light is shone through the prints create an afterimage, a shadow of a shadow. All homes are collapsed onto each other, becoming one all-encompassing abstract “home.” What is missed becomes more of a concept – not a particular place but one’s existence in a space in a moment in time, or the sense of a self. The return thus becomes impossible due to the inherent non-physicality of what is lost.
Although the images depict something very common and literal, their materiality and the distortion that results from it gives them an uncanny quality. They no longer look like my bedroom, or any bedroom for that matter. This double layer of non-referentiality – the lack of personal detail in the images combined with the added distortion – adds a sense of universality. The images could be anyone’s room or no room at all. By depicting something so particular to me and at the same time so generalized, the prints come to symbolize nostalgia as a shared disorienting state of in-betweenness and non-belonging.