In Transition One
In this work, and the other groups which share the same thematic title, my approach is influenced by Actor Network Theory (ANT). ANT began as a sociological theory developed by Bruno Latour, Michel Callon and John Law, but is now more widely considered within other disciplines, including the arts and landscape studies.
ANT configures all things of any scale – human or non-human/conscious or non-conscious – as actors that interact and comprise a study network. It argues that all actors in the dynamic and heterogeneous network have equal importance and create interconnections and associations.
Rather than propagate the pictorial representation of these desert landscapes through conventional photographic means the work results from an interrogation (working on location and then in the studio using analogue and digital tools) of how the discernment of a particular landscape and visual sense of place might be rethought when seen in conjunction with the agent of synthetic fabrics used in the greenhouses which have come to characterize the whole region.
The materials filter and significantly alter any sense of space – as perceived through the accepted convention of linear perspective – and within the two-dimensional, polythene and plastic webbing surfaces act to compress any documentation of rich natural phenomena.
The blending of the light, the image and the fabric result in varying levels of optical disturbance and the translucent polythene absorbs any fine detail which lies, according to logic, beyond the print surface. The matter and the landscape which existed at the point of exposure, and which is normally then seen in the image, has been supplanted by a much more ‘painterly’ and abstracted version.
The aim of these images was to explore representational and optical hybrids which might then allude to, or suggest, a range of dynamic actants operating with a given network.
- Latour. B. (2005). Reassembling the Social, An Introduction to Actor-Network-Theory. Oxford University Press