Hypothetical Landscapes - Statement
Pigment print on Moab Entrada Rag Natural 300 paper, rice paper, adhesive photo corners; 13" x 19"; Unique
Hypothetical Landscapes consists of a series of constructed fictive landscape portraits, reflecting my artistic reaction to the environmental crisis. Many photographers since the 1970s have raised our consciousness by capturing the environment’s destruction by careless human involvement. The significance and visual impact of these influential records of our actions is undeniable. My response to this ongoing issue is focused on efforts to care for our shared Earth through an artistic call for collective mobilization and communal stewardship. I am transforming real landscapes into fictional portraits of our shared world freed from narratives of place, becoming borderless, and transcending specific sites to suggest our interconnectedness and global interdependence. In part, this is a utopian vision, but the possibility of care and renewal of our planet is dependent on our relations with others.
In this series, photographs are constructed by combining and overlaying landscapes and elements from different environments. And, although grounded in the material reality of specific locations, ultimately, they aren’t about one particular place. I rely on strategies of composition, color, and texture to suggest a fictive visual unification. Part of the landscape is printed on photo-sensitive rice paper and overlayed onto another photograph, attaching the two with Japanese Washi tape or antiquated photo corners. In some of the pictures, elements from one landscape are visibly ripped from their landscape of origin and then mended together with the tape. These torn pieces of our natural world are fragilely held together to stop them from getting lost and engage the viewer with visceral materiality. The use of the photo corners with their associations to scrapbooks and souvenirs of past experiences suggests a warning that our unspoiled natural environments might become imaginary and nostalgic without collaborative care. That is, a wake-up call challenging our belief in the “going on being” of nature.