Eyes Flames herbs Chang heart hands feet
For Hamish Fulton, photography is one of the means of recording his solitary walks, of varying duration, that he has embarked upon and which, since 1973, have become essential to the creation of his artistic projects. As he makes clear in his statement of intent, ‘no walk, no work’. This is the context in which the montage Eyes Flames herbs Chang heart hands feet evokes a route that the artist followed in Ladakh – a mountainous region in the north of India –, over 12 days in July 1984.
Favouring an experiential dimension, Fulton presents himself not as a photographer or sculptor but as a ‘walking artist’, thus emphasising that it is the act of walking that determines his output. Indeed, like the drawings or writings that Fulton produces during his journeys, his photographs only gain meaning in connection with an experience of direct involvement in the landscape – an experience which, through these recordings, is later reified and shared.
The material component of the work thus becomes a document of an ephemeral process which was experienced only by the artist himself, without in any way altering nature or leaving traces of his passing. In this way, the work does not impose itself on this process and is intended above all to provide factual or subjective information which may provoke feelings and sensations in the viewer, or function as an evocation of a journey through a time and space which are absent.
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