terra incognita 2012

geography. autobiography. metaphor.

Contrary to the acceleration of tech advancement, I chose to focus my practice away from the speed, megapixels and sanitised over perfection so prolific in contemporary culture.

I wanted to reduce control within the creative process, allow for an accumulation of marks and erasures (think the NYC Abstract Expressionists), and facilitate space for the unpredictable and ‘Chance’ (think the Parisian Surrealists).

Working with my 5×4 view camera is slow and contemplative. Post-capture my positive exists purely for reference.

Visible only in transience, it is the trace impression on the redundant backing that I reclaim as my negative. Wet with chemicals it is immediately vulnerable to its environment.

When dry, I tape face down and remove the opaque emulsion. With no method of fixing there is no guarantee of longevity but an intensified preciousness in the fragility of its existence.

A poignant sentiment in our current global crises.

chevaux sauvages 43º22'32"n 4º48'37"e 2017

‘Theirs is no earthly breed
Who only haunts the verges of the earth
And only on the sea's salt herbage feed-
Surely the great white breakers gave them birth’

‘chevaux sauvages 43º22'32"n 4º48’37”e’ was inspired by the filmic aesthetic of Albert Lamorisse (Crin Blanc, 1953) and Denys Colomb de Daunant (Le Songe des Chevaux Sauvages, 1960).

The Camargue/Delta du Rhône is a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. On the D570 (direction Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer), marshland and native horses are the prevalent windscreen landscape.

Celebrated for their endurance and courage (and close in form to those depicted in France’s ancient Lascaux cave paintings), the indigenous horses of the Camargue, represent some of the oldest equine blood on the planet.

Curious as to what measures are being taken to ensure the horses of the Camargue marshes and wetlands are guaranteed a future of semi-liberty, the extent of this liberty and how/why it may be threatened, I am keen to return and continue my project.

instar (an idiosyncratic archive) 2020

In an effort to describe the intent of this project I feel it apt to reference the anguish of the butterfly, whose body must disintegrate and reform more than once in its life cycle.

The process of transformation consists almost entirely of decay.

We have not much language to appreciate this phase of decay, this withdrawal, this era of ending that must precede a beginning. Nor of the violence of the metamorphosis, which is often spoken of as though it were as graceful as a flower blooming. It is not. The process of transformation consists mostly of decay and then of this crisis when emergence from what came before must be total and abrupt.

The changes in a butterfly’s life however, are not always so dramatic. The strange resonant word ‘instar’ describes the stage between two successive moults, for as it grows, a caterpillar splits its skin again and again, each stage an instar.

It remains a caterpillar as it goes through these moults, but no longer one in the same skin.

Note: The text above was written by the Artist. No modification was made by COCA.

Andrea Morley

United Kingdom


My name is Andrea Claire Morley,
I’m an Artist : Photographer based in London.

I work across analogue and digital
– emulsion versus pixels
– I favour the chemistry;
it leaves a little space for the unpredictable and ‘Chance’

IMPERMANENCE is a consistent theme throughout my work –
a juxtaposition of abstract description and poetic metaphor;
experiential in essence.

Post motherhood – a BA(honours) and Postgraduate degree allowed me the time to focus and nurture my practice.
Achievements since have empowered –
as have stages of growth:
‘cherished, albeit not without rupture, beautiful, albeit not without pain’
– each phase a challenge in capability, confidence, strength and decision.

2021 plans are subject to change.
Current pandemic restrictions permitting, in May, I hope to be exhibiting at the15th Julia Margaret Cameron Awards in Barcelona.
I’m tentatively excited.

Workwise – an idiosyncritic archive is evolving.

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