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"Physical Sites: Nigel Green and Naglaa Walker"
2004-10-01 until 0000-00-00
Photofusion Photography Centre
UK United Kingdom
Physical Sites brings together two independent projects by Nigel Green and Naglaa Walker, whose work explores the psychological and physical spaces of scientific environments, challenging preconceptions and presenting different images of this often inaccessible world. In 2002 Nigel Green was granted unprecedented access to the interior of Dungeness 'B', one of the two nuclear power stations operating from the site in Dungeness. The resulting work accommodates a fundamental ambiguity. While he is sensitive to the unique environment at Dungeness - its fragility and vulnerability - and aware of the damaging absurdity that led to building the stations on such an unstable site, Green is also drawn to the stations' peculiar form of grandeur, both banal and elegant, and to the supremely sophisticated levels of human endeavour they undoubtedly represent.
The exhibition combines large scale colour photographs with an 'archive' of small reprocessed photographic fragments. It is a response to both the real, often awe-inspiring scale and complexity of the station's spaces, and to what might be called its 'psychological' power; the way it rests in the imagination and memory. The work also dwells on the station's uneasy presence in this elemental landscape, looming over fisherman's huts and a nature reserve that protects one of the most important and sensitive coastal environments in Europe.
Dungeness is commissioned by Photoworks and includes a hardback book priced at £17.95 with a specially commissioned essay by The Guardian's architecture critic Jonathan Glancey.
Naglaa Walker's artistic practice is informed by her scientific background. Before taking an MA in Fine Art Photography at the Royal College of Art, she graduated as a physicist and worked briefly in the field. In her work, Walker presents science not as instructive, infallible authority but as an object of enquiry and speculation, relevant to day-to-day life. In 2003 she was awarded a Jerwood Photography Prize for her work.
In Physical Sites she presents a series of images series taken in the physics department of the University of California on the American West Coast. Additionally, through abstraction, documentation and the use of diagrammatic and textual pieces, the work engages with the scientific environment, rendering an intuitive sense rather than a literal interpretation of physics, and thus challenges preconceptions about science and its accessibility. Exploring the boundaries which support the knowledge/power relationship and the idiosyncrasies of the scientific experience, her work aims to create new, cross-disciplinary understandings, and contest established responses.
Walker's book On Physics will be published by Dewi Lewis Publishing in October 2004 priced at £19.99, and includes specially commissioned essays by John Gribbin, scientist and award-winning author of many popular science books, and Sacha Craddock, leading art critic, writer and curator, who provides a context within which to consider and evaluate Walker's work.
Physical Sites is supported by the Institute of Physics.