The human mind is endlessly forming associations, caused by a vast array of triggers. Tracey believes that colour is one such trigger, and questioned whether people could still guess the origin of an image if it was represented in a visually abstract manner.
In There Lived a Man Who Sailed to Sea, Tracey took seven colours from The Beatles’ Yellow Submarine album cover and transcribed the opening bars (“In the town where I was born, lived a man who sailed to sea”). Using the formula 1000 pixels : 1 crotchet of musical notation, Tracey presents the lyrics as a visual score, where each colour represents a different note.
In his publication Non-Places: An Introduction to Supermodernity, Marc Augé provides the example of an airport being a non-place; it is neither here nor there, it is between destinations. Similarly, Tracey thought of the sea as a perfect non-place, but further, believed John Lennon could also be categorised as such: he does not live, but he is far from dead. His impact on this world remains, and he, too, exists in the realm of the non-place.