What were we supposed to do when we found out that we only had a handful of precious years left to live? What were supposed to do when our best efforts were, in the end, utterly meaningless?Our best efforts, too little, too late. All that work to turn things around–when things were just starting to look impossibly bleak. No fresh air, no more starry nights, no clean water. Temperatures so hot, and so unbearable. We thought that we had paved a path too far and too deep to be backtracked. But we did it. We were on our way. We thought that we could turn things around, after all that suffering. We were going to turn things around. So what were we supposed to do when they told us that the sun had exhausted its fuel much faster than they had expected–by millions of years? They said we didn’t have the resources left on earth to prepare for this. Now we wait for the cold to swallow us whole, watching the glow of our precious dying star eloquently grow dimmer and dimmer–begging for a chance to go back and do things differently.
What do we know about the dynamic between human beings? How is it that we are all so similar, yet so complexly different? Every feeling you’ve ever felt, every single tingle in every nerve of your body has been felt before–but for you and I, those feelings are inseparably personal and individualized. We are separated from the rest of nature as the whole of humanity–as a community, and species. Yet, we exist distinctly as individuals dependent on personal perception and experience, only able to do our best to relate to anyone else’s. The crutch of individualism is the inability to be able to truly, reliably, and accurately relate to another’s experience. Our dynamic hinges on the fact that I cannot immediately see the world the way that you see it. Of course, the beauty of the human experience is a byproduct of this fact. However, the darkest parts of humanity come directly from the other side of that double-edged sword. Empathy and imagination are the only tools we have to leave the world of personal experience. Understanding another’s experiences changes the dynamic and way we behave toward other individuals. This series is a continuation of previous work in the exploration of the human dynamic, in the way that we relate to others and our environment.
There are three components to each piece in this series: The relationship of the images of the combined individuals and whatever implied meanings they may have, the relationship of the subjects to the environment – in this case the negative space around them, and the personal response and relationship that the viewer has with each piece. In each image, you see a figure centered against a square, light blue background. The textures and forms are recognizable as textures and shapes of body parts, but recognition ends there. Forms overlap, twist and mix, creating something new and uncomfortably disconnected from the human form. There is a dynamic that occurs between each form that is somewhat of a visual manifestation of the often confusing nature of the dynamic between individuals in the real world.
It is my personal belief that we are closer than we have ever been before to living in a world where we solve personal, social, and diplomatic problems with the tools of empathy and expended understanding outside of personal experience. The dynamic of human beings is shifting and evolving with advances in technology and science. I hope that this series evokes interest in understanding the complex dynamic amongst individuals and human beings as a whole.
One With Nature
Second Nature II
We as human beings live in a very strange duality in regard to how we perceive our relationship with our environment. We tend to think of ourselves as removed from nature, above nature, or more advanced than nature. Nature is this thing we see outside, or something that we visit when we need fresh air. We don’t acknowledge that we are nature. This body of work is designed to explore many things: It is meant to act as a creative visual reference that allows us to see our dynamic and inherent relationship with our environment in a new way–in a way that makes us think about what it means to be inseparable from the environment we counter intuitively and deliberately remove ourselves from. It is also a personal exploration in solving visual problems in terms of conceptualization, an exploration of the capacity of negative film, and a personal way of making sense of the world through creative visual exercises. I want to understand people, why we behave the way we do, and the intricacies and complexities of our relationships between each other and our surroundings. Art, as a visual problem-solving tool has been very powerful for me in achieving this.
Human beings are experts at altering their environment in a way that is meant to remove themselves from it. Think about the way every place you know has been manipulated. But to think that you are removed from nature is a superficial notion as we are inherently bound to the very nature which produced us, and to rob ourselves of that is also, somehow, inherently in our nature. These images are meant to provoke a sense of in-seperability and allow the viewer to relate to their environment in a way they had not previously imagined. These images are self-portraits, and the landscapes are places that I am familiar with and regularly visit.
These images were produced on C-41 negative film. Each composite is a double exposure made by careful manipulation of lighting. This work dueled as a study in the properties and capacities of negative film when imagined as real-estate for visual creativity by sculpting the emulsion on each negative with light and shadow. All of the portraits were shot first. The roll was removed, and re-inserted into the camera, then re-shot as varying landscapes. A 50mm lens was used for the portraits and a 28mm lens was used for the landscape exposures.
An ongoing visual project in framing the outside world from the same window on different days. This gallery will continue to be updated as I take more photographs over time.