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Dance relies on the movement of bodies which is not fixed but able to leave a lasting impression. Being truly ephemeral, it disappears when the movement ends. The dance can be performed again, but this repetition itself would only be different, can never be exactly the same. 


MANIFEST EPHEMERAL is a series of photographs, sculptural installation and video. It marks the transitory states of gestures found within movement and fabric capturing an ephemeral moment. Performing a dance in front of a camera that she directs, Ophelia Jacarini takes the role of the dancer and photographer in order to attain an immersive viewpoint. Using a white fabric to leave a visible trace of her motion within a restricting photo studio space, she then leverages artificial intelligence to edit the raw images to obtain her refined series of photographs.

Appearing as a floating two-dimensional sculpture on a blue background, the largest piece in-series only presents the white fabric shaped by the dance. Beside the large work, watercolour looking photographs arrest moments of the dance performance that formed MANIFEST EPHEMERAL.


MANIFEST EPHEMERAL emphasises the importance of brief moments. Demystifying the unseen from the dance performance, the series conveys timeless visuals. 

Ophelia Jacarini’s purposeful choice of photography as a medium is due to the fact that photography has a particular aspect that, it shows a fraction of the infinity which can never be reproduced existentially. Her intention being to accentuate the ephemerality of a moment through dance, it also open up a question around the value of time passing. 


Through her practice, while the focus is often on final result or on aesthetics, the process itself gets overlooked due to lack of attention. By bringing the process to the forefront of her works, Ophelia Jacarini expresses that the pieces require the core elements of movement, fabric and photography to coexist as a whole.

MANIFEST EPHEMERAL emphasising the importance of brief moments, it surfaces the unseen from the process of dance performance over eternal visuals. It is an extensive continuation on her evolving studies and process of figure, form and suspension of time in dance movement. 

Images: Installation view, at Tomorrow Maybe Gallery, Hong Kong, 2021

Ophelia jacarini Manifest Ephemeral exhibition hong kong 1.jpg
Ophelia jacarini Manifest Ephemeral exhibition hong kong 2.jpg
Ophelia Jacarini Manifest Ephemeral 4

 [Exhibition view. MANIFEST EPHEMERAL 2020 - Tomorrow maybe gallery ]

Ophelia Jacarini Manifest Ephemeral 3
Ophelia Jacarini - Manifest Ephemeral piece 1

 [ MANIFEST EPHEMERAL 2020. Print. Hahnemule matte photo paper. 166x80 cm ]

 [ installation view : MANIFEST EPHEMERAL 2020. 1 min Video Edition of 2. ]

Within ‘Tomorrow Maybe’ gallery at Eaton Hong Kong, a palette of deep dark blue predominantly covers the walls of the gallery space where each frame appears seamless evoking an essence of floating images as a performance element in itself. 

The projection room exhibits a filmography installation focused on movement and performance which contributes as live emotion within the show. 

The installation printed sculpture in the centre of the floor space creates an active depth and division within the composition of the main exhibit as if coming to life.

Stepping through a portal to another section of the exhibition, a private screening of the featured dance performance is highlighted.

 [ MANIFEST EPHEMERAL 2020. 1 min Video Edition of 2. ]

Video Installation view, at Tomorrow Maybe Gallery, Hong Kong, 2021

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