"Nik Gaffney’s photographs quite simply show us how things actually are, ethereal yet real, haunting and haunted by themselves. Still, moving. Gaffney’s work shows us a profound nonviolence at work in the universe. But more than that — in their moving stillness, they are an instance of nonviolent direct action. That’s what art is, above and beyond propaganda, above “politics.” Art is humans being occupied by letting things occupy themselves."
—Timothy Morton. Moving, Still
Stillness is a visual wandering, a series of stills from a world in incessant motion. Nik Gaffney's photographs, taken over the course of one lunar year, are observations on materiality and time at turns ethereal, evocative and timeless. In Stillness, organic abstraction emerges from algorithmic concreteness. Page after page, a non-linear filmic sequence appears through juxtaposition and transitions, a flow punctuated with meticulous effortlessness. Somewhere between a documentary, a study or an artwork, the book itself is a fleetingly material object, a simple call to partake in the radical act of noticing.
"Stillness. Suspended movement. Balancing on the precipice of motion. The taste of intention preceding action. The aftertaste of movement coming to its end. Cyclic, looped and fed back into never ceasing motion, the never ceasing stillness at the heart of motion. Release of tension. The electrified stillness of a missed heartbeat. The weightlessness of acceleration, free fall and unravelling gravity. Change of direction. Deceleration. A slow approach to what is already here."
—Maja Kuzmanovic. Afterimages
Stillness is a collection of ambient photobooks, a year long series of experiments with ethereality, materiality and time. Eleven editions were published by FoAM on or near the new moons of 2015/2016 and a limited number of prints from each cycle were made. The final iteration is a collated selection of photographs from the series, with an introduction by Timothy Morton and epilogue by Maja Kuzmanovic, published in an edition of 300 by MER. Paper Kunsthalle and FoAM.