Fire Walk With Me
Referencing film director David Lynch’s visions of fire, these photograms represent forthcoming danger and unconsciousness. Fire Walk with Me addresses the presence of fire as a rising global phenomenon.
After travelling to the origin of a wildfire that led to Canada's largest mass evacuation, during the cold dark winter nights, I began experimenting with wood, leaves, seeds and recorded the contact with fire by placing instant film underneath the miniature pyres. The unpredictable heat, colour and light from the contact created Rorschach-esque imprints upon the film.
Further experimentation was made with the often discarded peel off portion, which is the film's negative. As climate of Northern Alberta has extreme ranges between winter and summer (-50C to +35C ) the negatives were placed over night in the freezing air to reveal subsequent crystallisation of residual photo chemicals becoming etched on the the film.
Fire acts as a voice from the wild, to cleanse and renew. The boreal forest is one of 18 earth subsystems identified as precariously resting on a tipping point. The age and mass of plant life within, means the air you are breathing now, as you are reading this, has been recycled many times over there. It's function is vital to all life and beyond beauty to witness. As the earth’s largest land biomes potential to collapse in the short term increases; ancient activity of wildfire begins to energise under new environmental conditions created as nature is assisted by man (human).
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Further information on this project is also available from Matt Shonfeld at Institute Artists. Email.
All images © Alan McFetridge