An Idea of Landscape 1

The images in this project originate in photographs taken on a 50-mile route through SE London known as the “Green Chain Walk”. In many ways, they are also a development of ideas first explored in the project ‘The Natural Order’.

The Green Chain Walk was originally conceived as an escape from the hubbub of urban living. But for me, it came to delineate an artificial boundary, a landscape of peripheral, banal developments and decay, whose (sub)urban spaces vacillate between seduction and alienation.

The restrained, seemingly timeless appearance of these images belies an often harsh reality, with broken chain-link fences, bullet-riddled metal, burned-out cars. Such things interject moments of apparent drama, but the drama is past - this is detritus, the mundane, reshaped and re-experienced.

In the colour work, the veneer of sober black and white is peeled away, revealing a more demonstrative raw state, a heightened awareness, where prosaic phenomena take on an otherworldliness. The artificial light from street lamps and buildings, the effects of long exposures on colour film, and the pared-down backdrops of night, combine to suggest and amplify associations not otherwise detected in the distractions of day.

Much is half-seen, suggested; night-time functions not only as a blank, black canvas against which we may observe the concrete world, but also as an interstitial condition. These are images of enticement, offering a sense of anticipation and disclosure.