Most of Anna Lilleengen’s artistic output deals with existential or metaphysical questions set in a natural setting.
Inspired by the challenge to exhibit at HOARD with other Leeds artists in 2013, she decided to turn the camera away from the endless forests, towards the forest farm and surroundings in the remote Scandinavian location where she stays when photographing.
A picture of a place almost out of, or outside of, time emerges. Family memories are etched into the structure and routine of farmlife: the annual rituals of haymaking, berry harvest, the hop plants that snake their way around the buildings. A place outside of the modern world: a stepping off point into imagination and memory.
Taken in late August, this series calls on the impossibility of place that the old folkloric Scandinavian collection of fairytales, ‘West of the Sun, East of the Moon’ refers to.
In late summer, the shadows lengthen even in the middle of day, creating an extra-ordinary light that casts the world into deep shadow in midday and that emanates a strange otherworldly luminescence in the darkening August evenings. The cut hay lies drying on the fields and feels harsh on bare feet; the water in the lakes is still summer-warm and peat soft – a shock in the newly velveteen evenings.
These contrasts are some of what inspired this series: the sense of existing in a place out of time, deep in the forest. Almost as though underwater, the shadows suggest watery surrounds.
This is a series of works intimately connected to their surroundings, affected by old cycles of time being marked in the year passing. And yet simultaneously appearing to be floating in a temporal space just out of reach – both in terms of time and place.
- C-type (chromogenic) prints, mounted on 3mm white PVC Foamex: 60cm x 60cm, edition of 20 with 1 AP
- Archival pigment prints, with laminate coating, in floating frame:
- 70cm x 70cm, edition of 20 with 1 AP
- C-type prints: 70cm x 70cm, edition of 20
- Archival pigment prints:
- 40cm x 40cm, edition of 30
- 30cm x 30cm, edition of 30
Made from digital scans of medium format film negatives, taken with a 1937 Zeiss Ikon camera