Connor Milnes

Musick Point: A Journey

Bachelor of Visual Arts Lens based media Video Photography Identity Place

Musick Point - A Journey is a story about how this specific place has meaning for me; the video work functions as a kind of lovingly crafted thank you letter. I have filmed during the times when I have felt down or upset; I visit Musick Point as a motivation to get out of the house. Sound plays an important role in this artwork as it translates what is going on in my head, moments of calm and serenity broken by screams of silence. Ideas of intimacy are also important as my connection to Musick Point is very personal. These ideas of intimacy and privacy are echoed by this artwork’s installation in a small space.  There is a sense of intimate connection which is established by my filming methods and use of sound.  I wanted viewers to feel the calm and respite that I feel when I visit Musick Point.

My photographic practice incorporates portraits of myself and others, as well as landscapes and buildings. My final degree work involves filming and photographing at Musick Point in East Auckland.  I have fallen in love with this place and the building that resides there; my relationship with Musick Point is key to my work. I try and visit this place every day and write down notes about what I can photograph, or ideas that can be done later down the line, or even just my thoughts. Musick Point helps relax me to a point where my anxiety is almost forgotten about.

My photographic process is very dependent on my mental state and my levels of anxiety.  Looking through the camera’s viewfinder keeps me calm and collected when I am surrounded by strangers. However, because of my mental health I am more persistent when it comes to taking photographs.  The very act of making images is mentally challenging for me, which thereby makes it more rewarding. I find that making photographs has changed the way I see the world and thereby myself.

My video work embodies a broken year of visits to Musick Point as a way of escaping both anything and everything.  My visits to this place are a way of calming myself and switching off from the chaos of the world. Musick Point - A Journey is almost like a thank you note to a place that has helped me through many a dark times in my life.  In the video there is a splitting between silence and sound, which is similar to how my mind works. One minute I feel empty and the next I am at ease and listening to the sounds that make me who I am.  Musick Point is part of this process.