Reflection Topic 9: The nature of things
This week the university asked us to consider nature and our problematic understanding of the term. Since the industrial revolution, (in the UK at least) we were inclined to see it deferentially, romanticising it as an antidote to city living, whilst, simultaneously, tearing it up for “progress” and latterly, pricing those who were born into it, out of any chance of owning their home by an influx of town-folk purchasing second homes.
Although location and place have featured in my work previously, as I have made books that not only feature people from my city but have the name of that city in their titles. It’s all been terribly parochial and I’ve had enough! My current practice sees me creating my own locations within the confines of my studio to create a timeless dream-like stage for my action to unfold on.
In terms of the relationship between my practice and human consumption, I’m happy to say, it’s minimal. My studio is a 25 minute walk from my home, I work with models who live in the city, I shoot in digital, rarely using the model lights on my flash heads and I try to keep printing to a minimum. A shoot rarely lasts more than 90 minutes and I rarely do more than 4 or 5 in a week. When it comes to exhibition and publication, I reuse the frames of unsold pictures and the modesty of how my family live mediates the carbon footprint of my creative output.
The image this week is from an occasional series I started a year ago in which I keep my head down on the walk from my home to my studio, using my phone camera to photograph anything I see of interest on the pavements or roads. I’m calling the series Le Petite Mort - because of the relationship between death and orgasm but also because these are little creatures: dead!