The land has never been represented objectively, and even the most unadventurous, chocolate box landscape is never neutral. That beauty is a human construct, assists us in understanding the important distinction between ‘land’ and landscape. To say a pleasing scene is ‘picturesque’ is to acknowledge the weight of art history and its linguistic framing. Since the fifties, art dealing with our ideas of landscape have grappled with our increasingly problematic relationship to nature. Issues surrounding the ubiquitous influence of human presence in nature are rarely out of the picture. Unlike other images, the vista of a landscape is almost always public, and common themes such as urban sprawl, movements in ecology, and our commodification of the environment all have a part to play in these studies. The artists in this exhibition deal with these topics, as well as addressing personal photographic vision, and typographies; looking at both microcosms that lead the mind to amplify to vaster scapes, and wide vistas reduced to specifics, creating non-prescriptive, personal symbologies.
Curator’s talk – 12th Nov 2011