Site or Sight

There is a playful conflict in my work, which has become a more muted examination of nature’s sublime majesty, brought to the foreground by unnatural materials and forms within this latest project.

Mountainous in appearance, these photographs show how scale and perspective can change radically how we see the world around us. Something about the textures tells us it is not paper nor glacial mountains but something quite different; and it is this construction of curiosity that drives my work.

A cast is a transferring of information, mirroring and reflecting. In some ways, this can be seen between humans and nature, geomatical buildings and the symmetry in a flower and in so many other ways, such as the subtle triangles and lines of crumpled paper. Here, it is both the unnatural material and the natural geometry produced under pressure, in the same way that landscapes are forged into peaks and valleys.

The stone-like materiality of plaster allowed this work to break in the same way and form tectonic plate-like forms, seemingly pushing and cracking from movement. This paired with ordinary paper, forms a strange artifact almost a fossil of the future leaving an imprint of everyday life. The two accompanying photographs, one lit from above and one from below, are of the same cast, in the same position. Light reverses the perspective and forms a seemingly new object.

Formed from an A3 sheet of paper, the cast in “Sight or Site” brings the reality of material and texture to the black and white photographs. Their relationship, emphasized by the formal border to the cast, brings focus to the detail and regulation of paper.

Despite handing some of my authorship away by not crumpling the paper myself and trying to move away from symmetrical geometry in my work, the presentation became formatted and personalized. This counters some of the themes of the work and furthers the contrast of human verses nature or order verses chaos.

The raw materials of plaster, wood and metal, combine to bring a constructed and built element into play with the imaginations of a natural landscape. It is a reminder of the earth below whether in a city or not. There is an aspect of optical illusion letting you escape into a different world of land and light all within the ways we see.

“Sight or Site” as a title conveys the uncertainty of what is being seen and hints at a landscape theme. From this work, I am currently working on an A4 aluminium cast, which will change the work, moving into a more abstract sculpture.

 

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