In the feedback from Sustainable Prospects Sear was mentioned again in the context of researching practitioners who engage in work about personal relationships and experiences with the landscape. I decided to start with a body of work entitled Becoming Forest which explores the experience of moving through a marked forest landscape, and the altered and heightened perception of surfaces, forms and space. Sear adds to the original photograph by tracing the lines of new forest growth using a digital pen and tablet. The chaos and entanglement of these lines against the image are intended to compare with the lines of the skin of the hand or the veins within the human body which in turn contrast with the geometric shapes painted onto the trees:
Another body of work entitled Nature is Magic explores ideas of vision, touch and re-presentation of the nature of experience with reference to human and animal bodies and the rural environment of Wales:
David Campany said of Sears that she was:
“one of photograph’s foremost innovators. For her the medium is one of magic as much as realism. It is never pure, fixed or entirely knowable. Each new series presents a new set of challenges that offer up her fascination with craft and our habits of looking.”
So why have I been directed to her work on two occasions. Is it that my tutors want me to be more post-modern or is it to introduce me to a world of fantasy and encourage me to move away from my traditional and rational approach? Is it just to give me another perspective that might provide me with new ideas and approaches moving forward?
Artfix Daily. 2017. Becoming Forest by Helen Sear, New York: Klompching Gallery.