Hmm. Hadn’t thought about it like that. She was referring to layers of meaning, but for me, it has no layers of meaning, because it’s linear. So its a layering up of meaning, one after another?
I’ve never spent such a lot of effort on a moving image work before. But since she’s said that, I’ve sumperimposed a poem – another layer – on top of the layers that she felt already existed. This new poem is, for me, more ‘layered’, because it simultaneously competes with the previous work / meanings aleady there. It refracts / infects the meaning of the initial work (I hope).
But there are other layers. Layers in my photoshop files, layers on layers, developed over the months that I have been working on it. I think a still is finished (it’s stop-motion – in a sense), then two weeks later I’m back in it, making a new layer. Many of the layers are ‘turned off’ – invisible, but there, in the .psd file, they exist. Witness to the history of the image.
So layers are about history and technology and aesthetics, all together. That’s layers for you.
I think the limitations of linear work might be summarised in the limit to layering that you eventually reach. If it’s non-linear, its exponential, layers upon layers upon layers, as some famous muppet Swedish cook once said…