Afterimages are the ghostly pictures that float in front of a person’s eyes after they’ve stopped looking at the actual thing. The artworks in Sarah Sze’s exhibition of the same name are made up of not just one lingering image, but hundreds of them.
On the top floor of the gallery is the installation ‘Images in Debris’, a towering pile of moving pictures and the everyday detritus of a workspace: pot plants, plastic drinks bottles and balled up tinfoil that looks like it used to enclose a packed lunch sandwich.
The sculptural mass itself is almost too much to take in – should you look at the running cheetah? The bowl of water? The loo roll? – but the work doesn’t stop there. Filmic projections intermittently cover the surrounding walls, some of them deliberately disrupted by the shadows of gallerygoers walking around the installation.
Downstairs, this sense of over-stimulation continues, this time in wall-based works made from endless fragments of paper. The torn strips and squares are stuck on to the walls and other pieces of material with little bits of blue sticky tape.
Within the ground floor room, some themes recur. A sleeping child is spotted again and again, as are various maps and rural landscapes. But like upstairs, what you experience is seeing millions of images at the same time rather than just one remaining spectre-like in the mind’s eye.
As such, it’s all very millennial. These artworks recreate the deluge of digitalised info we’re so used to. Which is why the final artwork is so welcome. Outside, suspended over an algae-covered pool, hangs a hammock made of blue streamers with confetti-like yellow leaves collected in the middle of it. Woe betide anyone who actually tries to sit in it, but after so much to look at, a waterside snooze is a pretty attractive proposition.