SÝN is Æsa Björks latest work and the last in a series of works that focus on the membrane that separates the inner from the outer and on vision or observations as an act that makes us alive, but also defines our borders. SÝN in Icelandic can be understood both as the act of seeing and as a vision that can be understood literally or as pointing towards a more subconscious inner vision. In earlier work such as Last d’Vision (1998) the eye was probed and the images produced in glass showed fractions of real life imagery and anatomical features of the eye itself like a scientist probing for signs of time passing. Later, in her work Impression II (2013) – a self portrait depicting her with eyes closed as though dreaming or looking inwards while a heavy burden of glass spheres blurs her borders. The viewer is placed outside of the body, observing the details of a body covered in distorting glass spheres.
In her latest work SÝN, Last d’Vision and Impression II become one. The eye is probed, but instead of being obstructed by physical boundaries, involuntary inner movements created while breathing under the heavy load of spheres are revealed. This act of breathing is projected onto a paper thin dome of Pâte de Verre. Up close it is reminiscent of looking through a microscope while the subtle movement of the projected spheres onto the dome seems to dissolve the membrane even further. The viewer is invited to go beyond merely observing the surface and is given access to involuntary movements and subconscious acts dissolving the borders observed in previous works. The pulse of life is revealed in all its fragility, inviting the viewer to look inward – feeling hers/his own pulse and rhythm of life.