I was just on the phone to my mum. We talked about the exhibition STARE, I am part of that opened in London last night.
She told me she had read my exhibition information sheet to my Grandma, who had cried at hearing the words. Below is what I wrote.
The landscape must be my favourite in Britain.
The place is Glendevon, more specifically the small area around the hut my Grandfather built in 1948.
But I can’t show you the landscape. I don’t need to. Because it is the feeling that is more gripping. The detail and the air. The water and the whirly wind. The wild storms. The still summer days when you hear nothing but your own footsteps and the bleating of sheep, accompanied at all times by the burn busily bubbling down the valley. Always dancing.
The water must be tasted. The ground walked barefoot. The prickly ground-covering thistles shrieked at and remembered. The wet stones slid on and caressed. Cut by blades of grass that hand in hand soften your tread. Burned by the sun that keeps you warmed from the cool breeze.
It is not enough to simply look at the landscape, but to sink in to it. To lose yourself in it. Every photograph I have taken has been in eye shot of the hut. I need go no further. There is too much to see. The radius about 1.5km. I can sit by the burn and watch the water flow until the hills move. An optical illusion that regularly entertains me in my solitude.
There is life in this valley. It does not need me to photograph it. Though it doesn’t mind the occasional visitor. Someone who can hug it, say thank you and take its memory home is a deserved reward for this scene. This spot, magical in my eyes, will always live and all that lives here will die. Making way for more grass, more sheep, more algae and more birds. It is its constant cycle that comforts me.
It will outlive us all.
Clair de Lune is a composite, analogue c-type print from the series, Lady into Hut. At its fullest it measures 4m x 4m and is made of 154 prints.
Accompanying the piece, Laura is exhibiting a handmade photobook as sculpture. Made for the occasion of Stare, ‘Your Soul is a Chosen Landscape’ takes panels from Clair de Lune and presents them as subtle abstract photographs. Grainy and obscured, they give another definition to looking closely at photography.
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© Laura Hynd