CHRISTOPHER ORCHARD

Academic & Artist Portfolio

ABOUT ME

Foremost; I am an artist and academic.

I describe my practice as interdisciplinary response to place based learning. A process driven experiment that takes various forms as a kind of unfolding and entangled dialectic, not between people, but between biospheric phenomena and disciplinary perspectives on historical and contemporary nature/culture binaries. I am eager to address shifting Australian perceptions of land over time through an interdisciplinary approach to critically engaging the spheres of ecology, psychology and photography through chronological assessment of Australia’s changing national identity. In tracing these disciplines I draw on narrative shifts towards what might be considered a new artistic movement (moment) in the birth of a dialogic of creative practice for the anthropocene. I call this process a post-humanist post-materiality perspective, or, a practice of environmental mutualism.

I am a critic of photography. The lingering tradition of colonisation and nature/culture binaries reverberate in contemporary landscape photography like ghosts of an agrarian mentality through an ongoing collecting and commodifying of landscape, culture and experience.  Through photography, these seemingly habitual behaviours provide many in Australian society continued excuse to practically and rhetorically avert their gaze from the realities of ecological disaster and biodiversity loss; particularly in regards to that of the threats faced from anthropogenic climactic change.  This aversion is logically dishonest, psychologically problematic and principally unethical, and results in an ongoing exploitation of the documented world by commercial and many fine-arts photographic practitioners.