New Meridians (Triptych)

  New Meridians (Triptych)
billboard print / 2021

In 2021, New Meridians (Triptych) was installed on billboards in London, Bristol, Birmingham, Manchester, Sheffield and Glasgow as part of the exhibition Division/Revision, curated by Uta Kogelsberger.

The New Meridians (Triptych) combines disparate, physically distant European landscapes to question histories, conflicts, power and shifting alignments across the continent, bringing to mind the uncertainty of connections between people and nations. In pandemic and post-Brexit 2021, many connections were once again unstable - lines and boundaries were being redrawn, new meridians were appearing.

The three pictures themselves (of Ireland, Luxembourg and Croatia) are appropriations of photographs found in late 1950s editions of the German travel magazine ‘Merian’. They are a record of the landscapes and towns of Europe as they were at the time of the Treaty of Rome, the beginning of the EEC, in 1957.

Looking back at these pictures, Stenram overlays them with her own markings: numbers, dashes and circles suggesting new alignments, but vague enough to refrain from imposing a fixed key or cipher. The cartographic annotations suggest many things - lines of communication, movements of people or goods, borders, usage of the landscape, as well as systems and laws being put in place - but also fractures, fault-lines or rifts.