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A persistent theme to my work is the sense of space, the physical and indirect spaces we create for ourselves and those we design or shape for others.

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Bethseda is a work from 2005.

My inspiration for this installation was drawn from the Gospel of John which describes the Pool of Bethseda, its healing properties and the transient nature of its power, leading me to examine the relationship between pilgrims and a spiritual space.

Bethseda, then, is a formal study in light, space and the subtle movement of liquid, to represent the troubling of the water in the original text and convey the sense of anticipation by those drawn to the Pool.

The technical challenge was to design an appropriate means for visitors to the installation to interact with it. Covered or open, the original Pool would have been a broad setting, providing space for many pilgrims in search of healing.

I used a recurring device in my work: a "bender" - a primative covered shelter - sealed from external light and scaled for several visitors to enter, explore their unique feelings and reactions to the stimulating drop which sets the surface water in temporary motion.

Bethseda differs from many of my installations, some of which stand to this day, affected by the passing of time. Bethseda remains a moment in time. Its record as a photographic piece is now the only visible footprint of a favourite work.

Copyright © JoAnne Huntley