Pixel Premise is an installation to be exhibited at Scenic World, Katoomba, between April 8 and May 8, as part of Sculpture at Scenic World 2016.
It was created to reflect my anxiety around a future in which nature is experienced increasingly through a digital lens and via a fractious media stream. Over 200 square mirror tiles grow like a pixelated fungus from a disintegrating, fallen tree, reflecting the ancient canopy in a dazzling imitation of the real thing.
It embodies a natural progression of my art practice in that it explores both the:
- Relationship between sculpture and photography
- Effect of the digital revolution on culture, and in this case, our relationship with natural environments.
The work is comprised of over 200 mirrored tiles each measuring 235mm square. They will be installed on the ancient forest floor of The Blue Mountains National Park, a world heritage site, with trees many hundreds of years old towering above. The mirrors are rooted individually to the ground with a thin, central wooden stake. And elevated to heights of between 80cm and 120cm to accommodate the terrain and the idiosyncrasies of the resident Lyre Birds.
The square mirrors are positioned on site to grow, like a pixelated fungus or rash, from the periphery of a disintegrating fallen tree; reflecting the canopy and snippets of the sky in kaleidoscopic complexity.
When experiencing the work your eyes dart around the bright, reflective fragments to piece together an image. They refocus over and over as they jump from the reflection to the real thing. The changing angle of the sun will mean people’s experience of the work will vary at different times of the day.
Pixel Premise reflects my anxiety of a future in which nature is increasingly experienced via a digital lens and fractured media stream; one in which nature is replaced by screens and people are “OK” with a reflection of the natural world. As a whole society appears seduced by the glossy promise of technology and oblivious to, or powerless against, what is lost as global population continues to rise and technology governs more and more of our lives.
Listen to this great story on Future Tense about the future of architecture as our populations grow and move further away from nature.
By 2050 it is understood that 75% of the world’s population will be living in urbanised areas plugged into the internet 100% of the time – Will this generation even know what they are missing out?
Philosopher Johns Stuart Mills “Solitude in the presence of natural beauty and grandeur is the cradle of thought and aspirations which are not only good for the individual, but which society can ill do without.”