Shadows Beyond Illusion

22 Apr


This animation is prepared for an exhibition later in 2015. I’ve been allocated a small space in a gallery, an old bank – in fact the old vault – and will project this animation on the back wall with prints of my work on the side walls.

The video can be found on YouTube at:

Although there is some drawing in this, instead of sketching entire sequence as with a previous animation (Morphomitosis; ) short videos were fused in a similar way to those used in my digital artworks, juxtaposed with rotoscoped drawings, and a photo of graffiti taken from tags on a wall.

Before describing the work, I pay tribute in this film to the inspiration of two brilliant artists to whom I’m indebted; Yayoi Kusama and Zilvinas Kempinas.

The overall composition is a simplified version of the Sonata form in classical music: Introduction, Exposition (with two contrasting themes), Development, Capitulation (with resolution of the themes) and a Coda similar to the introduction.


It begins with water, ends with water, and includes fluoroscopic X-ray examination of a pair of lungs in motion, simply breathing.  A circle with a dot, an ancient symbol for the sun, or the metallic element gold, in scout tracking signs also represents the end of the trail – “I have gone home”. Life is a trail with a beginning, an end, and twists, turns, changes and bends along the way. Although movement in the work is generally localised and controlled, the sense of time changing is enhanced by an additional unexpected element, travelling through a forest; an external environment; trees, earth, rock flashing by.


Swaying natural eucalyptus branches echo diaphragmatic movement and contrast with Kasuma’s motionless, highly geometric dots. Kempina’s shimmering, ever-shifting stripes and lines, moving but going nowhere. Tension develops as lines and dots are juxtaposed. It resolves as the fleeting introduction of a shadowy human figure heralds a recession into sparkling water, breathing lungs, and an exit. The high-pitched sound backing of playing children’s voices changes to the gentle sound of a babbling brook.



I hope you will enjoy this animation, it is only the second time I’ve attempted an ambitious project like this, and although there are errors in execution, these have a certain naive charm and I’ve allowed them to remain.

8 Responses to “Shadows Beyond Illusion”

  1. elmediat April 23, 2015 at 1:56 pm #

    Excellent work Tony. Fascinating process and superb execution of finished piece. The learning curve on video art can lead to creative errors – mistakes that do not distract or detract, but enhance the finished work. In the end the message is sent and the only one who see a weakness is the creator. I know that feeling. 😀

    Great to see someone else exploring different media.

    BTW You should set up a Vimeo account and post work there as well. They have a high target audience for creative original work. There is a lot of material there that does not get on YouTube. 🙂

    • Xraypics April 23, 2015 at 4:03 pm #

      Thankyou for that, Thanks for the comment, much appreciated. I’ll have a look at Vimeo too. Cheers.

  2. burgessart April 23, 2015 at 6:45 pm #

    Tony you have a real talent for video and I look forward to seeing more…….well done!

    • Xraypics April 23, 2015 at 7:47 pm #

      Thankyou I appreciate that. I’m going to try some more, but sweated blood over this one whilst learning the program, it would be a pity to waste all that work.

  3. Anita C. Miller April 23, 2015 at 11:22 pm #

    A visual feast… beautifully done!

  4. joergkruth April 28, 2015 at 6:59 pm #

    you have to post some photos of the exhibition later on, Tony, many different styles, fine!

    • Xraypics April 28, 2015 at 9:31 pm #

      Thankyou, I will try to do that.

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