Sam Jury's work explores the psychological impact of film-based imagery and examines how its ubiquity shapes our understanding of society and self. Jury works across the medias of photography, video, sound and installation, whilst navigating the gaps and fissures between moving and still imagery. Starting with staged scenes and performances, she uses the editing process to suspend narrative and create scenarios that hover between specific time, place or genre; a world made up of associative readings, that calls upon a global or collective memory to measure reaction and meaning. In direct opposition to imagery of popular culture, where interpretations are strictly controlled by the use of repeated conventions and types, Jury’s work denies the instinctual by amalgamating disparate sources to produce a single view. Within that view the subject subtly shifts from its default passive to occasional active in an attempt to disrupt the safe boundary between the watcher and the watched; a device deployed to invite and then destroy the power of the gaze.
In recent works, she has been focusing on filmic representations of trauma and event, specifically a critique of the notion of ‘suspended trauma’: the idea that films of dramatic/traumatic incidents from the past are continually replayed in detachment from the specific moment or place of the event including slow unfolding catastrophes such as those caused by climate change. These traumas hang in digital space while existing simultaneously in thousands of sites, in numerous formats.