I’ve been working on a series of drawings and digital works that for now are entitled Manipulated Nature. They all involve the alteration of situations and views that I come across in my surroundings and relate to how we view and adjust the world around us, sometimes for practical reasons, sometimes for aesthetc and sometimes it would seem, for little reason at all. The way the Dutch landscape in particular is used and abused is maybe particularly extreme in the area of manipulation.
The drawing shown here is one of a series of tree images that hopefully with time may become paintings, although I suspect before we get that far there are som technical issues to be addressed as to how to make something that works well as a drawing, also work well as a painting.
If you are interested enough to see a few more pieces of my work click on the ‘paintings’ link above.
There can be few more manipulated landscapes in the world than the Dutch landscape. There is constant construction and reconstruction, rearrangement and quite literal landscape creation as land is reclaimed from the sea. There is a constant tension between man and nature in this densely packed land. My work as an artist has grown increasingly to focus on these tensions and what the natural world around us means to us and how we respond to it.
Today we walked through a small section of the landscape of the central Netherlands. As I often do on such an excursion I made a small watercolour sketch, in this case of a the linear geometry of a recreated piece of nature, a pool for wading birds. Further on we encountered a selection of other newly created pools of a various of forms for a variety of nature. I was reminded of my own pools I created in my work a few years ago. Manipulated nature of a slightly more extreme form.