born 1975, England
British photographer Jon Wyatt’s work documents the detachment of modern culture from our physical landscapes, both in the context of landscape iconography, national identity, human ecology and ecosystem transition; and through the perspective of vast spans of time and geologic processes. His work has been published in PDN, National Geographic Traveler, Orion Magazine and The Times amongst others and exhibited in Europe, SE Asia, the US and Canada.
Historically cultures have turned to their natural environment as a source of inspiration for collective identification. Myths, memories and cultural virtues are projected onto a landscape, its characteristics mapped, elaborated and enriched. Over time that landscape moves beyond the role of a cherished homeland, acquiring iconic status and becoming imbued with moral and spiritual significance. Painters, writers and photographers help create and venerate these landscapes, which come to embody a national identity and the aspirations of a society.
Increasingly this bond between a culture and its physical landscape is deteriorating, becoming eroded as we adapt the environment to own ends, rather than allowing it to shape who we are. This is the framework within which I photograph – searching for tools within the landscape that articulate this growing spiritual and cultural detachment. Amongst the issues addressed by my work are those of national identity and iconography, conservation and the ethics of land ownership. Developing further the concept of vast spans of geologic time, other work looks at ecosystem transition and extinction, topographical shifts, seismic events and tectonic processes.
Artist website: www.jonwyatt.co.uk
Curriculum Vitae (CV)
Jon Wyatt CV [PDF]