27th – 29th August 2016
For this exhibition of work in the stables at Cheeseburn Grange in 2016, I produced produced three large-scale prints, collectively called Bats in the Hayloft at Dusk; Cheeseburn. The work was developed to complement sound artist Chris Watson’s installation in the hayloft above the stables (a recording of a colony of the Pipistrelle bats that roost there) and the poetry of Linda France.
As dusk falls you may be lucky enough to see bats, but you are unlikely to hear them as they emit a ‘chirp’, and listen to the echoes. From these echoes bats can build a rich ‘picture’ of the world about them. Bats emit sounds at a higher pitch than we can hear; sounds which can be picked up by a bat detector. These sounds can then be rendered digitally to produce a sonogram – a visual representation of sounds at dusk made by the bats – ultrasonic sounds the naked ear can’t hear.’
It is important that my work relates in some way to the environment around, or in, which it is shown. My practice links art, science and poetry; head and heart. We need this combination if we are to protect our world. In my experience I have found that many scientists (especially, but not exclusively, the natural historians I often work with) are inherently creative and have an intuitive understanding of the world that drives their science forward’.
My work simply values and celebrates nature for what it is. I am not interested in re-framing the arguments around nature conservation, climate change and pollution by stressing only the value of what nature can do for us; that it is worthy of protection only when it performs a service for us; that it is replaceable. The strongest arguments that opponents of this economic rationalism can deploy are arguments based on an emotional understanding of, and a simple love of, nature (of our world in all its bio and cultural diversity).