Art Consultancy and Writing

Weeping Walls
Robyn Backen

Sydney International Airport

In her arrangement of fibre optic cables, Robyn Bracken seems to gather the lines drawn by artists in understanding perspective, their tautness relaxed to express the concept of distance rather than its appearance. As airport passengers depart, light appears and disappears in rhythms of morse code, transmitting messages of separation. An extinct form of communication animates the sophisticated medium, combining the feeling of distress signals with elaborate calligraphy.

Draped in contemporary materials, they reach back towards a geneology of communication, perhaps to forms of writing.The carving of tablets creates meaning by the removal of its material, allowing light and shadow to form legibility. Illuminated manuscripts introduce light to the book's interior by reflections of goldleaf, light appearing and disappearing in the locomotion of turning pages. If the colours of nature are found in pigments, light is the colour of consciousness.

(From 'The Art Trail', a guide to Sydney Airport's art program, 2000)
Photography by Ian Hobbs
Robyn Backen, Weeping Walls (detail), 2000, fibre optic cables,
glass, steel, variable sizes. Sydney International Airport