Landscape in Mind

Posted on December 3, 2013

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I have decided to abandon the title ‘Women and Landscape’ for my portrait series of women landscape photographers. My preference now is to present the work as a series of portraits of landscape photographers and to allow the fact that they are all women to emerge in the process of viewing. I want the viewers themselves to come up with and think about the question:  ‘Why are they all women?’

For now I will use the code name ‘Landscape in Mind’. My working hypothesis for an artist’s statement is set out below:

“Landscape photographers have a particular awareness of the physical environment around them. Some are drawn to the natural landscape others to urban spaces. All make decisions about what and where to make their photographs, often returning to places with which they have a special connection. 

‘Landscape In Mind’ is a series of portraits of landscape photographers. They are pictured at  locations where they have made memorable photographs. The psychological link between subject and background adds contextual information about each photographer and their particular relationship to the world.  Each portrait is accompanied by a brief text which further contextualises the image. As part of a series the portraits also inform one another. The work as a whole, is intended to explore how context and setting informs the perception and meaning of a portrait.

The portraits are subdued and quiet with an objective rather than expressive style. Broomberg and Chanarin’s ‘Mr Mkhize’s Portrait’ has been a particular influence especially with regard to aesthetics and the use of associated text. Bernhard Fuch’s portraits have been another influence both stylistically and because he typically locates his subjects in a landscape setting. 

The photographs have been made with a large format film camera . This slows down the process of making the portraits and is a significant factor influencing the style and objective appearance of the portraits. I expect to show the final work as a series of 20×24 inch gallery chromogenic prints each with an associated text panel. Whilst the portraits will be shown together in a gallery installation, I would wish there to be a significant space between each portrait so that each can be viewed in isolation of the other. This is intended to slow down the process of recognition that they are all women.”

I have now made five portraits for the series. In January I am hoping to add two more, one in an urban location and the other in the Scottish Highlands. In the spring time I have two other photographers who have agreed to be part of the series, for whom the spring colour will be a significant part of the photograph. I will then need to start to approach other photographers to take the series up to between 10-15 portraits which is what I would like.

Here are the portraits I have made so far without any captions or supporting text.

Landscape in Mind 3rd December 2013-5

© Keith Greenough 2013

Landscape in Mind 3rd December 2013-4

© Keith Greenough 2013

Gill

© Keith Greenough 2013

Rebecca

© Keith Greenough 2013

Catherine

© Keith Greenough 2013

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