Blau started as a video project (2015) in response to loss and absence. Thoma later made an artist’s book (2016) of the same title. Both were presented in a reading/screening at the 19th International Contemporary Artists’ Book Fair in Leeds (2016).
In her response to Blau, Griselda Pollock describes how the video Blau and the book of the same title interact: “Between a video with its potential to convey psychological time with its images of air travel, suspending us in the sky, hovering over the distant land between points of distance, and the book form, with its pages of image and text, its address, a certain mystery is created that resists any naming. The word that came to me was reverie. A reverie before time. A reverie in time. A reverie on human time. A reverie that makes us feel time. Blue is its transport.”
Pollock, Griselda. 2016. “Blue is a mood.”In Pages: Textbook, edited by John McDowall, 22–25. Leeds: Wild Pansy Press.
Thoma’s journal article “Blau – longing and the repetitions of (Deleuzian) becoming” (2016) questions what can be gained in a contemporary context to ponder over philosophical concepts like Deleuzian and Guattarian ‘becoming’, Derridean différance and a Freudian economy of pleasurable and unpleasurable principles in the wake of journeying towards Thanatos through a differentiation process where pleasure is deferred through the ‘spacing’ and oscillation between principles of ‘pleasure’ and ‘reality’.
The writing examines through a close visual and textual analysis of a range of artworks including Steve McQueen’s filmic installation Ashes (2014-15) and some of the author’s own works such as Blau (2016), Steps washed over (2013) and Dreamcatcher (2007), how contemporary art can play its part in elucidating questions of multiplicity within becoming, different visual modes reflecting on aspects of différance and the paradox of co-existence of absence and presence within visual form.
Thoma, Andrea (2016), “Blau – longing and the repetitions of (Deleuzian) becoming”, International Journal of the Image, Vol. 8, Issue 1.