Bull Island (In Progress)
The initial idea behind this work was to look at the interaction and relationship between people and nature on Bull Island. It was a place I came to initially, to relax and surround myself with nature. Even though its part of Dublin city, it can feel quite remote in certain parts. The site has been described as ‘an open-air laboratory’ by Trinity biology professor David Jeffrey as many surveys and nature monitoring programs take place there. It's the most protected site in Ireland while also being an important amenity area for the people of Dublin. These roles, which can seem at odds with one another interests me. There’s a tension between people and nature that is particularly pronounced on the island. As we encroach more and more on the natural world places like Bull Island become more important. The nature of the future is one which will be increasingly controlled by humans.
This project looks at interpretive signage or nature boards found in Irish nature reserves, parks and wetlands. I travelled around the country shooting sections and fragments of the boards over the course of three years. The nature boards exist to show people what animal and plant life they can expect to see in the surrounding area. The signs are hand painted by various regional wildlife artists and I was drawn to the human vision of nature depicted on the signs. I was attracted to the romantic depictions of animal and plant life and the contrast between the images and the reality of the surrounding landscapes.