The French geographer Augustin Berques believes that landscape is not a genre but a medium; it is not an object but exists in our minds.
‘Landscape is the medium in which the objective reality of the environment combines with human subjectivety.’
With this theory in mind, my aim is to explore this medium in order to understand the relationship between the environment, my own personal experiences, and imagination.
The paintings are fleeting glimpses of the landscape; they are borne from countless exposure to the raw elements of the Peak District. They are not picture postcard visual recordings of any particular vistas, but more a memory of an experience, a culmination of many remembered elements of the landscape, merged together and capturing a sense of the place. The paintings act as a freeze frame to my subconscious mind, capturing little snippets of long forgotten experiences, which allows me to explore the boundaries between nature and imagination.
The Derbyshire landscape offers contrasting elements that sometimes make me wonder if they could exist in any other place: it is a mix of beautiful yet harsh, bright and yet dark, cold and warm at the same time. To be in the Derbyshire landscape is to invigorate my senses, an opportunity to re-establish my connection to the very essence of nature. I feel that through experiencing and painting the landscape, I become a part of that environment and it a part of me, allowing me to transmute this empathetic connection into a visual outcome, through the mediums of landscape and paint.