the natural and the digital
As both an environmentalist from Oregon, and an artist using digital technology, Deb Hall’s work interrogates the growing chasm between the natural and the digital.
Our all-consuming distraction with digital technology impacts the way we interact and communicate with our environment–and each other. As we are lured away by the bright colors and sounds we find on screen, the subtle sensorium of nature and the joys of direct observation, are devalued. We are transfixed and transported by the immediacy and fast pace of this small window on a virtual world. We revel in the level of control we have. At the same time, our ability to experience and enjoy nature first hand is diminished by restricted access (due to private ownership and development), distance, or safety fears. A walk in the woods requires a slower pace and skills of observation.
As we spend less time in face-to-face communications, we spend more time communicating through mediated text, memes, emoticons, symbols and images. Images, loaded with meaning and code adopted by different demographics which may be creating more distance. We appear to be, at once, communicating more and experiencing less.
Even our representations of nature–which may be well meaning–misrepresent. The environment, digital technology, photographic history, our behavior and attentions, are the focus of my work.