48 Summers
, 2013

Distributed art: seven elements

Shadow Concept (b/w); text
Fragile Protocols
Everyday Rituals
Grid of 48 digital photographs (b/w)
Grid of 36 digital photographs (colour)
12 dried daffodil flowers/ seed heads
12 dried daffodil flowers on paper
Set of ritual beadaries; papier mache, dried daffodils/seeds
48 daffodil bulbs


Shadow Concept:
The pale, deathless affodil that overruns the Elysian fields of Hades and which is a favourite food of the dead, is invisible and unknowable to the living. In the mortal world it finds approximate form as the vivid yelllow daffodil that erupts and decays each spring. It is thought that attention to the material form and processes of transformation of the earthlyl daffodil may coax an encounter with its shy invisible shadow.

48 Summers is a ritual to transform the anonymity of the unknown.

Fragile Protocols and Enactment of Everyday Rituals
Year 1
Acquire 12 cut daffodils and arrange in a vase. Allowing the shadow of the affodil to be sensed, make images of the daffodil's gradual transformation from bud to decay to seedhead. Archive the images.
Link to the digital archive of images made in 2007

Year 2
Identify 12 daffodils from a cluster growing on grassy ground. Turning to the nearness of the invisible world, make images that glow with the light of the mortal world. Archive the images.
Link to the digital archive of images taken in 2012

Year 3
Acquire 12 cut daffodils, and in recognition of invisibility as a form of subtle transformation, delay their decay by drying and pressing them.

Acquire and plant 48 daffodil bulbs

Year 4
Make 48 papier-mâché beads from paper versions of the archived images and wrap them in dried daffodil petals. Mount the 12 pressed flowers. Make a ritual beadary.
Link to an image of the ritual beadary made in 2013
Link to associated work, Ritual Beadaries (2007)

Year 5
Tend the daffodil bulbs planted in year 3.

Remember the 12 daffodils from each of the previous stages in the ritual and use the beadary to keep count. Through the purposeful act of selecting moments to recall, and by not having to keep track of the count mentally, the mind is supposedly freed to simultaneously encounter the vivd yellow daffodils of earth and their pale yellow shadows.

The configuration of the daffodil ritual beadary is based on the number of mortal summers enjoyed by one particular soul.