Bridgette Minuzzo has spent a lot of time in and under waves, with the pull and push of current; that altered sense of gravity. Swimming is an embodied experience, one is in the landscape. Curious about what the underside of waves really looked like, Minuzzo turned to slow motion video. Technology has long been used to augment perception, as with Eadweard Muybridge’s photographs analysing animal locomotion. In Minuzzo’s work we are submerged in a magical world, as the camera records clearly what eyes, encased in foggy swimming goggles, cannot see. Water becomes invisible while air has a form; a string of pearls, a mercurial splash, a cloud. As wave motion is stretched or frozen, an ordinary moment can become sublime, attention is heightened; the viewer has a physiological response.

The events of 2020 have given a darker meaning to the metaphor of being underwater, of time stilled and slowed; the altered state and isolation of lockdown. Travelling was not allowed; there was no time for swimming. Life has been lived through the interface of devices. Minuzzo’s work responds to a yearning to be submerged once again in the invigorating and cleansing reality of a pool, a lake, an ocean.

Bridgette Minuzzo, Diving into the Virtual, 2020, slow motion video, 5 min: 48 seconds.