Date of Submission
Project Advisor 1
Senior Project submitted to
The Division of the Arts
Of Bard College
Jaden La Rocque
Annandale-on-Hudson, New York
A moment of time that stands in between other moments of time, how exactly do you pick them out? The idea of “being in the present” is an arduous, convoluted task, for the present is now but also behind us immediately. The mind can think that now is now, but how do you convince it? How do you hone in on now actually being now, rather than something that stands in both the past and the future? Childhood memories stand as these sorts of sensations that are easily romanticized, being that these nostalgic thoughts typically only feel like they stood in a time where now was now, why was it so much easier then? Reflecting on this thought led me to try and pick out these present times, these Recesses, with the acknowledgment that my childhood is quickly dying before me. Childhood is a vat of memories that coincides strongly with both people and place, these people and places forming the structure of what we find nostalgic, of what we can perceive as “better times,” even if these times were in fact not better, but at least more simple. Seeing my best friend evolve from the scrawny body of a child to the muscular structure of the man he is now, passing the dog food factory on the way back from school, watching the pool crumble that my friends and I used to swim in every summer, seeing another love of mine vanish before me, observing my grandmother as old age truly begins to impact her, listening to the train noises that I can no longer hear, picking at the same food that is on the holiday tables every year, observing my mother as someone who now sleeps alone…these testaments of the present, these idylls, are just as temporary and fleeting as they’ve ever been. My frustration with the present is something that has been important to me since I realized it, when was that? The idea of permanency is anything but permanent, for what has ever been permanent? This piece of paper, the tiny wrinkles of your face reflecting back, the shirt you’re wearing right now, the bedroom you sleep in every night, none of it ever lasts. The present is anything but ours; we can’t hold it, it is a force that is perpetually moving and we move through it trying our best to hold on…hold on to something, or someone…but never to any avail. We disguise the present with people, tasks, or vacations to forget about it, but this forgetfulness is apparently “being in the present.” The present wants to hide and keep on its voyage that eventually eats and swallows everything that is under its lens, and everything is under its lens. As the present flies before us, through us, under us, and above us, there are these photographs that attempt to capture some glimpse of a presentness, something that can be reflected in another age of now.
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La Rocque, Jaden Creed, "Recess" (2023). Senior Projects Spring 2023. 303.
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