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Inner Spaces – Rachel Wallace

‘Inner Space’ is an instinctive and visceral response to the effect of landscape on our psychological and emotional well-being.

Stemming from the desire to understand myself in relation to the wooded landscape I am inexplicably drawn to, the work traces a meandering path of self-discovery. Using images of myself from past and present combined with close up landscapes of densely wooded areas exaggerated by high contrast monochrome printing, it suggests a metaphor for a divided self. By photographically inserting myself into these places the work “hints at a dark undertow while also alluding to the harmony and connection between self and nature” (Alona Pardo – Source Review). This is a space to meet and commune with nature, negotiating and illustrating their differences and similarities using my own body to engage with the landscape. Through an exploration and fascination of place the transition from outer to inner landscape is examined.

The unmanaged, intricate and entangled environment is physically and emotionally absorbing, suggesting a depth of meaning which I am keen to impress upon the viewer. In an age of ever-increasing screen time we are alienating ourselves from a sense of place, space and time that the rhythm and cycle of nature offers. The work asks us to stop and look again at the detail and complexity of nature allowing a realisation of its impact and importance to our wellbeing.

This body of work is a narrative exploring what it means to be human in a world of ever-enveloping technology. A world where we are losing touch with reality and ourselves as we turn our backs on what is available to us, at any time, and at no cost in preference for a digital world that can be obtained instantly at our fingertips.

The images give an outlet, explanation and means to learn to express and understand ourselves as individuals by becoming absorbed in the natural world that lies on our doorstep and eschewing the virtual and the falseness of what lies beyond.

I live and work in the Chiltern hills, UK. My personal photographic work is characterised for its exploration into the dynamics between humans and the natural landscape as two interacting spheres of life. / @racheljayw

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