Research Spotlight: Embodied Connections - Establishing a Framework for Environmental Landscape Pedagogies through the Principles of Photography
Alyson Agar, Senior Lecturer in Research & Scholarly Activity at The Northern School of Art, 2023
This research explores how engaging in photographic practice can inspire and awaken deeper connections to the landscape. Through a practice-based methodology, the research inquiry comprises of photographic material representations of the Tees Valley landscape, fusing analogue, digital and post-digital techniques in parlance with camera-less and climate friendly plant-based photography. In response to the material investigations, the study considers how the landscape might be surveyed and documented the landscape through photography, drawing on the established traditions of topographical photography and straight photography in reference to new modes of photographic image-making and photography in the expanded field.
Moving between photography and the photographic, the research study asks what photography of the landscape can look like, what forms it can occupy, and its mode of operation contributing to discussion around the ontological positioning of photography in the contemporary climate. Through a ‘moving methodology’, the act of moving through the landscape through walking, drifting, meditation, and rumination informs the production of the work, an embodied engagement with the landscape, photographs become non-representational and abstract prints of place with nature as collaborator.