Thursday, February 17, 2011

Jeremy Wood, Mowing the Lawn, 2010

Jeremy Wood, a UK based artist, utilizes self and technology to create a fascinating series of drawings. Wood employs GPS technology to pinpoint, chart, and track his movements on a lawn mower in his garden. The movements are recorded in a series of lines that create images that would not exist without the innovation of GPS technology. The geodesic, or straight lines to curved spaces, qualitiy of his drawings connect a seemingly strictly technological image to that of an organic form with a human connection. The lines were created over ten years by the specifying points that Wood plugged into his GPS, i.e. time, place, date as his data. The lines in Wood's series of images were generated over the course of several seasons.

Wood is actually referred to as a GPS artist, a new field of art that has cropped up with the invention of this cartographic technology.

Wood's art represents an interesting take on the relation of humanity to space and time. He calls into question how we, as humans, view the world now that GPS is at everyone's fingertips. How do we see maps? Do we see them as Google images--bird's eye views of the world at large?

According to PSFK Salon Austin, "‘Mowing the Lawn’ portrays [Wood's] movements on a riding mower in different intervals of time where he uses his GPS data stream by accurately plotting his time, date and position coordinates to reveal an evolving exploration of travel in the form of densely packed line drawings and animations."

Installation at Tenderpixel Gallery in London

Critics say that this piece reflects upon the way in which humans consider travel--the lines overlap, backtrack, and get stuck in certain places. The images that Wood creates resonate with viewers because of the intrinsic desire to map and chart location in a planographic manner. Some of the images look almost eerie, like an x-ray of broken or shattered bones.

Jeremy Wood, Nine Years of Mowing, 2010

Taking the menial task of mowing the lawn and maximizing it to the status of art is a testament to the esoteric quality of the apparently simple drawings Wood gives us.

Wood is represented by Tenderpixel Gallery in London.

Jeremy Wood, Lawn 2005 Scale 1:300, 2010

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