Myles Shelly

Portfolio Wild Things
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I travelled around Ireland photographing interpretive nature signage over a number of years. I'd find the signs in parks, wetlands and nature reserves , usually erected and painted by local wildlife artists or conservation groups. A romantic vision of nature was presented to us, landscapes teeming with wildlife, named and numbered. I began to focus in on details and abstract fragments of the boards.

The attempt to place an order on nature seems to be hard-wired in the human brain. From the earliest cave paintings to Linnaeus’ ambitious attempts to catalogue all of the world’s species, we have sought to make sense of the apparent chaos of the living world, arranging species into hierarchical groups through the prism of human vision. In seeing and naming the living world, we forge some of our deepest relationships with these elusive, wild things.