This work comments on the Sisyphean nature of our constant and very human search for meaning and purpose. “I’ve been thinking about the philosophy of the absurd and the tension created by our need for existential fulfilment in an irrational universe. Through my work I want to communicate human tendency to give meaning to meaningless things and highlight the importance of this to our wellbeing/survival,” Nina Wright said.
Wright created this thermal printer to encapsulate these ideas. The work behaves in a way similar to religious relics common in Catholicism, performing seemingly autonomously. The patterns produced by the printer are unpredictable, giving it a sense of independence. Audiences may be inclined to attach a personality to them or read what they are trying to ‘say’, projecting their own spirit onto the machine in order to rationalize and make sense of it. In exploring these ideas, Wright draws the conclusion that our intrinsic spirituality and our insatiable yearning for meaning and purpose, drive an inclination to make our own meaning out of nothing. In His Image and Likeness
is one of 51 works selected as finalists in the 2021 Fremantle Arts Centre Print Award.