4 May 1905
Prompt: We were assigned to create a triptych as a visual representation of a chosen chapter from Alan Lightman's Einstein's Dreams.
Within Einstein’s Dreams the chapter “14 May 1905” truly captured my attention. During this chapter, the idea of a place in which time stands still is presented. Einstein then questions; “who would make the pilgrimage to this center of time?”, who is desperate enough to cling onto a moment and stay stagnant in it forever? I wished to explore this phenomenon further; the way nostalgia permeates one’s subconscious, causing them to grieve a past state of which they can never obtain. Even when presently experiencing a joyous moment, the fear of time fleeting may ruin it. I’m quite guilty of this as well. I remember- even as a child- sobbing annually on my birthday because growing older petrified me. I would’ve given anything to freeze time. During this chapter, I specifically adored Lightman’s diction, the ways in which the paragraphs juxtaposed each other. Thus, I utilized the same method to capture his imagery within my own piece. He’d discuss the positive momentssmiling children or lovers kissing under buildingsthen go on to present the opposite; the loss of innocence and the death of love. The demonisation of aging is most prevalent within my first and second panels. I used childlike dolls to symbolize “the beautiful young daughter”, then contrasted those elements with traditional symbols of corruption-such as tattoos and smoking- things that many parents would disapprove of. On the text only panel, I used excerpts from the text to further convey the concept. The top half is unscathed and “pure”, whereas the bottom has been torn and soaked in coffee. On my final panel, I delved more into the idea of lovers falling out of love. Similarly, I included conventional iconography of love, yet I distorted them slightly in order to depict loneliness.