Mountains and/or in-between Seas

At the bottom of my backpack for the last few years there has been a crappy Samsung 35mm camera I found in my dad’s closet.  The first roll of color film I developed had some auto-timed ‘selfies’ from his great musky fish trophies in Wisconsin.  The same camera used to slosh around next to the pack of Twislers, tucked away for the right moment, catch before the release or maybe the sun setting on the horizon.  
This camera catalogues my opportune moments convening with radical nature: the glacial fields of Iceland, atop mountains, down to the Florida Keys and everywhere in-between mountains and seas. 

As a collection they encompass movement, looking for fabled place, which may or may not exist the way I remember it.  I am documenting our world, as it exists in the popular consciousness, edited and elevated, glazing over our future destruction and eminent demise of our planet.

Viewing these photographs intimately forces attention on a single subject, and the act of observation is necessarily solitary: one subject to one viewer at a time.  Relative scale of the landscapes becomes ambiguous and the experience is akin to being absorbed while looking down a microscope. The impression of time passing, and the world outside, momentarily slips away and an intensified consciousness takes over.   A whole universe frozen in time is reanimated through rose-colored glasses, far away from our planet’s melting, flooding, burning and drowning future.
As Country star John Conlee put it best,
‘These rose colored glasses
That I’m looking through
Show only the beauty
‘Cause they hide all the truth’

The work aims to be engaging and playful but also function as a comment on the mutability of future and our ever-evolving malleable relationship with the landscape.  Through optimistic ignorance these extraordinary, otherworldly places seem to dwell in a parallel universe free of dread.

The book’s structure references 19th century Victorian commercial travel photography, as well as sublime interaction, a show-window spectacle, of the exotic and epiphanous engagement with the sacred. These effects were expected to carry viewers beyond their everyday existences and yet confirm their most central assumptions concerning the world.  Similar expectations were (and still are) made of photography, and more so today, to entertain, to take the viewer away from the dread of future days and notice what is there, at least for a little longer.  

a selection of 35mm color photographs accumulating since 2017