Nature; Talking (2022) 
Single channel video and audio installation.
Video duration (10m)
Audio duration (4m35s)

The collaborative work Nature; Talking invites the viewer to dwell in a space of transition when considering our relationship with nature. The collaboration brings together sound work by Laura Skehan and a moving image projection by Claudia Breitschmid.

Their work investigates connections of the natural and the constructed environment in ecological terms during the time of rapidly advancing climate change. With abstraction and poetic language, they give a multi-layered voice to the earth’s changing landscape, inviting the viewer to engage in a dialogue, rather than anthropomorphizing the natural world, gives autonomy to the subject. Intentionally created with different durations, the works oscillate, loop and pause, giving a new relationship between the images and sound with each viewing.

The video from Swiss artist Claudia Breitschmid is based on the four elements - earth, fire, water and air - from which everything is created or, in other words, based on the principles of solid, liquid, gaseous and incandescent. The essay film addresses changes in the earth’s surface and was filmed in Iceland.

The sound work created by Laura Skehan, features experimental field recordings using hydrophones at Dublin Bay, biodata sonification devices at the Botanic Gardens, Dublin and contact microphones at Lecarrow Limestone Quarries. Skehan proposes working with the landscape, giving agency to the natural world, not through taking material from the earth but asking the earth to be a participant in the process. The work explores the idea of deep ecology and by listening to the discomfort of the earth through sound, underlines that all of earth’s material, ‘sentient’ or otherwise is recognized as interconnected.

The work was commissioned by the Irish Museum of Modern Art, Dublin for Earth Rising Eco Festival 2022 and was subsequently shown at ‘You will never miss the water until the well runs dry’ curated by Shannon Carroll at Shee Alms House, Kilkenny, Ireland. 

Image credits : Claudia Breitschmid