TRYING TO FIND THE SPIRAL JETTY 1997
Tacita Dean (1965 – )
- DIGITALLY RECORDED CD 27 MINUTES
- Accession number
It was rumoured that Robert Smithson’s long submerged earthwork, the Spiral Jetty, had resurfaced. Dean journeyed to the shores of the Great Salt Lake in Utah in the hope of being able to witness this legendary intrusion into the landscape. The sound work Trying to find the Spiral Jetty is based on recordings made during the car journey, made with a friend, following detailed instructions, supplemented with later embellishments. The aural experience of their quest is therefore a fusion of fact and fiction, befitting the elusive nature of their goal. Another work refers to the mosquitoes that plagued them on this pilgrimage, represented by the magnetic film tape. Whether the set of instructions were followed correctly or not is unclear, but the projection Rozel Point, Great Salt Lake, Utahrecords the site at the end of the journey and shows no trace of the jetty.
Landscape, The British Council 2000
A transparent, flexible plastic material, usually of cellulose acetate or polyester, on which light-sensitive emulsion is coated, or on which an image can be formed by various transfer processes.
Landscape is one of the principle genres of Western art. In early paintings the landscape was a backdrop for the composition, but in the late 17th Century the appreciation of nature for its own sake began with the French and Dutch painters (from whom the term derived). Their treatment of the landscape differed: the French tried to evoke the classical landscape of ancient Greece and Rome in a highly stylised and artificial manner; the Dutch tried to paint the surrounding fields, woods and plains in a more realistic way. As a genre, landscape grew increasing popular, and by the 19th Century had moved away from a classical rendition to a more realistic view of the natural world. Two of the greatest British landscape artists of that time were John Constable and JMW Turner, whose works can be seen in the Tate collection (www.tate.org.uk). There can be no doubt that the evolution of landscape painting played a decisive role in the development of Modernism, culminating in the work of the Impressionists and Post-Impressionists . Since then its demise has often been predicted and with the rise of abstraction, landscape painting was thought to have degenerated into an amateur pursuit. However, landscape persisted in some form into high abstraction, and has been a recurrent a theme in most of the significant tendencies of the 20th Century. Now manifest in many media, landscape no longer addresses solely the depiction of topography, but encompasses issues of social, environmental and political concern.