So last year land burned. Up on the Roaches, like many areas of the Peak District wild fires took hold, this one was caused by a failed portable barbecue. It changes the under-foot. This creates new vistas and damages biodiversity. The smell, if you get close enough, kneel down try, it is still there. Plants holding onto rocks now just skeletons and sculptures of past living forms. The peat dusty and friable. The winter rains just washed off. Above and below.
This land is changed and although new growth will come, indeed it has already, there is slow progress of renewal.
This is relative to my practice, walking and image making. A temporal act. The pace of which allows looking, examining and time to kneel and breathe the earth.
Finding space and moving through, by, over is never going to be straight forward. Environmental aesthetics will be called into question as a walking artist. The impossibility of creating an image of/with the experience will forever be thus.
Taking ownership of the experience is easy but then owning it is not as easy at it sounds. The experience has happened, the evidence is only what one has through it – a passing temporality – nothing solid.
I walked across the Roaches (Peak District) recently. I had forgotten about the moorland fires of last year. The ground still scored, dotted with new growth and in the sky a mournful call of a Curlew holding territory.
I stopped and knelt down, smelling the burnt peat. It filled me, flooding my passages, memories came flooding back.
I looked up, and watched the hikers and other families tread the path.