Engraved into the clear glass window of a tiny church in Wastwater is a celebration of the power of mountains: an image of Napes Needle and the biblical text I lift up mine eyes to the hills, from whence cometh my strength. Jon Bird first encountered this merging of the sacral with the material on an early climbing trip to the Lake District, and the work in this exhibition derives from a long-term interest in mountainous terrain, the texture and structure of rock and the signs of geological formation; of mass, contour, profile and topology. Later, studying the art of Cezanne, Bird came upon this quotation: “the landscape thinks itself in me” Landscape as a mental and physical cartography of the material world: the surface of lived and located experience of place. And, always, the struggle to work against the grain of the overly-familiar, whilst recognizing the symbolic and cultural connotations of wilderness – as external reality and inner state: a geographical imaginary.


© 2017  Ply Gallery Ltd. All rights reserved.

Companies House Registration No. 10610083

Ply Gallery, The Arts Centre, Hornsey Town Hall,

The Broadway, Crouch End, London N8 9BQ

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