1. Walking in nature.
My art is influenced by my relationship with nature. I find that I return again and again to the same places, one of which is the forest which looms near my home. Walking there, I cannot deny that my whole being is transformed by feelings of connection to nature; these are feelings I want my art to allow others to experience.
I feel that poetry about nature can also produce such feelings in it’s readers and has an influence on my art.
2. The process of walking itself.
Walking has a history- it is a cultural and social activity. It is also a practical method of transporting the body through space. Walking can allow me to tune into my imagination and become more aware of the subtleties of my surroundings…. surroundings that have an effect of how I feel and therefore the path I choose to walk.
3. Deep Ecology and New Materialism.
The concept of nature has political and cultural significance. It is difficult to define exactly what nature is. Various authors and scholars, and indeed philosophers, have examined our relationship to the natural world and found it suspect.
Human beings want to dominate nature and use natural materials for their benefit, usually at the expense of a healthy planet.
A close examination of quantum physics reveals that everything is deeply connected to everything else, on a physical level, therefore, we cannot really deny that we are ‘part of nature’. By exploiting nature, we are harming ourselves.
Women have been associated with the natural world from the beginning of time. While this might seem quite lovely in many ways… historically, both women and nature have been viewed as passive, and therefore open to exploitation. In continuing to embrace nature as a living, breathing, life-force- are women limiting themselves and rendering themselves passive?
5. Material Feminism and associated theory.
Women are social, cultural, political beings who act independently within the world in myriad ways…. One of the actions women engage with is the process of making art.
Art materials themselves are not inert, as materials also enact ‘agency’, they have certain properties and capacities that allow us to interact with them, but not necessarily ‘govern’ them.
When I produce art, I engage in a social and political practice that involves reciprocal relationships between myself, my materials and the natural environment. These relationships are evolving and changeable and they ultimately express my freedom as an individual woman.