Welcome to the inevitable.
That silent, invisible porcelain monument. Glossy and sculpted and made in our curious form. Shaped to fit its one particular function. Closeted away behind its own door, it exists on a social divide. On its own turf, unlike anything else in the world.
Who could suspect such a simple social splinter as the great divide between body and mind? Unsightly but necessary. A symptom of the mechanics of the body we shun and a reminder that we are tied to the toilet for life. For some it is a heartless torture, beckoning them back without mercy, vanishing when most sought.
Whereas from upon, the ungainly dynamic changes. The organic body and its flaws and foibles. Such brilliant subject matter for its eccentric habits and comic, unabashed honesty. The toilet, at once an incomparable natural pleasure, a means of survival, coupled with a diabolical shame. A revelation and an outright exposition. A natural movement but, only naturally, a private one.
It is remarkable that something so familiar, so universal could be so overlooked, so shockingly unfamiliar. In all its glaring forms it rarely reveals the solemnity of its purpose. It standardises us all as few other things do. It is a unifying structure that is the humbling dependence of the human race over, regardless of sex, age, class, health. The great weights of justice, the weighty greats of commerce. The laurels of our time, philosophy, medicine, religion. Our pasts and future, our worldly wisdoms, all brought across this same threshold. Land, air or sea, the toilet remains. A brilliant fact of life. But an altogether invisible one.
We keep little record of the toilet for its ordinary use. The focus of Sitters is not the toilet’s function, it is a project for the person and their own unique way of using the toilet. That rare private time. It is, if nothing else, a photographic testament to sitting.