Light-Memory, Mnemosyne II

Edgar Lissel

Installation, mirror, luminescent color pigments, flashlight, light bulb

Austria 2007


Specially treated mirrored panels are installed on one side of a darkened space to be entered by the viewer. These mirrors are divided into narrow vertical strips about four millimeters wide. A strip of mirror and a strip of luminescent pigment are arranged alternately next to one another. Opposite this surface a photographer’s flash is installed. A diffused light source is mounted above the surface of the viewing area. When viewers enter, they first see themselves confronted with their own reflection. The flash is set to coordinate with the viewers’ movements – the bright light momentarily casting the recipient’s shadow onto the viewing area. This shadow is “remembered” by the luminescent pigment and remains clearly visible until the next flash occurs. Viewers can take their reflections with them, so to speak, as they move while – in contrast – their original shadows remain behind; that is to say, one can step away from one’s own shadow. The reflection, as an image of the present, is next to the shadow of the moment just experienced: a moment where the viewer had already gone and of which he/she is briefly reminded.

This memory remains visible until it is overlapped by a new image created by the next flash. Using photographic elements, images are generated that reveal relationship between the past and the pending. (Edgar Lissel)


Edgar Lissel, born in 1965 in Germany, lives in Vienna.




Edgar Lissel, Vom Werden und Vergehen der Bilder (Vienna: Schlebrügge Editor, 2009).

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