“Landscape is a medium of exchange between the human and the natural, the self and the other. As such, it is like money: good for nothing in itself, but expressive of a potentially limitless reserve of value.”
Excerpt from ‘Landscape & Power’
By W.J.T. Mitchell
In the roller coaster world we live in its easy to forget how much land we’re using up and transforming it with a never-ending multitude of uses – buildings, roads and lots more buildings and roads. I feel we don’t take into account just how much our urbanisation plans and continuous development is ruining this special country. And its a small country too don’t forget. I don’t understand why we insist upon plundering our natural resources, tearing up our land as a result when we should be harnessing them.
These small experiments I have undertaken look to challenge our view of what’s natural and unnatural, usually its very obvious but by using natural elements and transforming them into an ‘urban product’ I hope to jolt the viewer into recognising what we’re doing to our precious spaces.
Infusing colour into a natural habitat is not unnatural when done so by planting flowers or viewing birds however when its put in through a spray can, a completely unnatural resource invented by humans, I believe it defines the natural order in which we are shaping and changing the world we live in.
For reference, I use non-toxic chalk paint for the larger outdoor experiential projects. The great thing with this is the marks are made and then simply washed away by the rain over a short period of time. Once again, I like the temporary aspect to this product as it’s more of a ‘natural’ painting medium.
It also leaves our lovely natural environment back into the same condition it was in before – in its ‘untouched state’. But the fact there its only a small piece of woodland left by the property building company for resident’s enjoyment and ‘managed’ by the local council. It leaves me to ponder questions about just how ‘untouched’ and ‘natural’ this little piece of woodland is. Though its obviously important to savour and rescue these special places of ‘landscape’ for ourselves wherever we can.
So to end, will the mark of human expansion ever slow in pace and will we be able to protect our natural landscape?