As an artist and a geologist, I’m interested in exploring how landscapes are shaped and how they respond to human behaviour. Diagenesis examines elements of the environment in and around Exmoor; an incredibly beautiful and dramatic landscape that has been subject to human influence for many thousands of years.
In order to create the images for Diagenesis, I made a series of conventional photographic prints and then folded them into complex three-dimensional forms via an intricate studio-based process. The folds exert an unnatural level of control over the scene, contorting it and re-shaping it, until it becomes something else entirely. The folded objects represent human interventions on the environment. But by returning the forms to the landscape, they are subjected to unpredictable natural forces – the wind, rain and tides – and that human control is inevitably diminished.
I will never be a passive observer of the landscape, because to me, the landscape represents a multisensory and embodied experience. Consequently, this project took on a performative aspect, with the resulting images conveying my personal experience of being outdoors and interacting with my surroundings. Ultimately, Diagenesis explores the relationship between humans and the environment, using myself as both a metaphor and a catalyst.