video work, 9 mins

The Complete List of Everyone I Have Ever Met in My Life is part of an on-going investigation into memory. Memory as fact and fiction. Its legacy and the feelings it conjures. How it torments and pleases our imaginations. How it informs all that we are…and then we forget.

The Complete List of Everyone I Have Ever Met in My Life is almost entirely incomplete. It was a task doomed to fail from the outset. In one day trying to recap and list from memory a lifetimes worth of relationships, encounters and crossed paths. That list of the names that were recalled has been turned into this video. The names scroll vertically like the end credits of a film; a simple white text against a black background.

The game of listing became a video, which became an act of remembrance and memorialisation. Like the everyday heroes, protagonists and antagonists of a true-life story and crediting the part they have all played in a young life. A commonplace and everyday true-life story. The list, a spontaneous act of memory, begins to resemble as much a list of war heroes or corporate sponsors as it does the end credits of a film. All as key players in a life, listed simply in order of their recollection.

The simple and playful conceit of the video, competing in a game with ones own memory, creates a sense of narrative and drama as a viewer follows the names and the struggle to remember. The monolith of text alludes to a bigger picture of an absent life and (almost) all it has amounted to. A twenty-four year young life summarized in an nine-minute video.

Each name is stripped of any sense of visual aide, which with us being very visual beings, was the primary means for remembering the majority of the list. This has left only what language has labeled these subjects. What arose in playing the game was a personal exploration into the relation between subject and label; image and text; memory and nostalgia. Were these names or faces first? What is it that we remember and what is it that we don’t? How do we translate the sensation of memory into language? Into video? Hopefully the video triggers a similar exploration of nostalgia in the viewer and their own life stories. What of my list? Who can I remember? Why can I only remember this name, this face or this location and not the entirety of the meet? What stories, perhaps previously forgotten, are invoked by this reflection?