/25 Altered landscape

Brendan Austin

Paper Mountains

Whilst walking through an eerie forest on the New Mexican border on a trip through the heart of the United States, I misread a sign stapled to a fence. ‘Only we can prevent Wilderness’. This thought has been with me since. It is the examination of nature and our influence on our surroundings that is the foundation of my recent work.

By exploring ideas that provoke the questioning of truth in photographic reproduction, blurring the boundaries between fiction and non-fiction, I attempt to build a story of an alternate nature.

This is a narrative between the forces that pull and push our understanding of the place we stand. The isolated desert city running on oil generators, the Mars like landscapes of a volcanic environment and the mountains made from paper all attempt to start a conversation concerning the loss of meaning and reality. Building a sense of desertification in the various bodies of work.

Working with process is also an important aspect of the work. By printing the original mountain onto thin newsprint, working by hand on the paper, photographing the results and repeating several times, I am striving to disrupt the surface on the image. Questioning the reality of the mountain and photography in general.