Echo Chamber is an ever-expanding series of abstract landscapes created by disrupting, manipulating, and reimagining famous Australian landscape paintings (as well as a few portraits for good measure) to emphasise the algorithmic nature of the digital terrain (pun intended). Pixels interest me because they are the smallest visible controllable element of a digital image; beyond the pixel is just pure information—bits of information. I wanted to explore the Australian landscape because my artwork and personal experience have never been self-reflectively ‘Australian’ or defined by place. Overseas is the only time I feel ‘Australian’ (whatever that necessitates) because the moment I open my mouth and speak I am instantly recognised and catalogued as Australian, along with all the perceived ‘Australian-ness’ that comes along with it. Yet for me, landscapes reveal more than time and place; they reveal universal and fundamental questions—and this is what really interests me. The aim is to explore the circular relationship between technology and nature by creating large-scale prints that sit somewhere between real and imagined landscapes. Humans have always interpreted nature based on their technology. Newtonian mechanics, for instance, saw the Universe as a clockwork mechanism, and genetics—discovered at the dawn of the computer age—viewed DNA as digital code. Likewise, today we superimpose our current fixation with advanced simulations and artificial intelligence onto the laws of physics and, by doing so, ponder if we are ourselves living in a simulation. Nonetheless, physics, particularly quantum physics, isn’t really about reality; it’s just the best description about how the world appears to us. Science, like art and philosophy, isn’t about finding out how or what nature is; rather, it is about what we can say about nature. On a more personal note, I find it boring, monotonous, and uninspiring when contemporary photography remains within the safety of conceptual and historical boundaries – things like taking the easy path by simply photographically recreating a still life or taking a photo with the subject wearing a pretty mask or costume as if this is ‘cutting-edge’ (and repeating this same process until it becomes meaningless). Taking a risk, even if this risk comes to nothing, is wonderfully rousing.
The antecedent vs the reimagined:
Works within the series:
Click individual work to view more detail: