Jasmine Targett

In trying to fathom the connection between nature and existence, and our current struggle to find a sustainable relationship with our environment, it has become apparent to me that I suffer from what 17th-century English philosopher Sir Francis Bacon called “a mystified incomprehension that science alone cannot cure”. When I think about observation I sense there is a greater connection between subject and observer than my eyes can fathom.

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Through my art practice I have begun to glean that there is a conceptual component to sight where just by thinking about observation we are able to challenge and alter what we see. Einstein described it as the intuitive “feeling for the order lying behind the appearance”.

My most recent body of work is a vision quest into making ‘blind spots’ in perception visible, exploring the tension between awareness and sight. Taking a techno-romantic approach, I reinterpret traditional craft materials and techniques, working with new technologies to find innovative ways to respond to how climate science has changed the way nature is perceived and understood.

We live in an age where irrevocable changes are happening in the biochemistry of nature. Beyond the limitations of our senses, the aesthetics of emergency becomes visible when the eye is aided and enhanced by lenses and computers. Working with devices that magnify the natural world, my work offers an expanded gaze into perception, making the void between existence and nature tangible.

My latest installation, ‘Blind Spot’ maps the 20th century tipping point of awareness surrounding environmental concerns – the discovery of the ozone hole. Filtering Earth’s life support system through a computer, the ozone hole appears like an iceberg looming in space. It is a dark wonder of the natural world that cannot be found in any atlas. Its appearance in our atmosphere every spring is a haunting reminder of how close we come to pushing our environment beyond the point of regeneration.

This intricately handcrafted landmark of anthropocentric disaster maps how our environmental chemistry has shifted into a ‘super ecology’ in which the natural and artificial have become inextricably linked within one natural system: an ecosystem of universal proportions from which no part is immune from the changes of its counterparts.

Today there is a tenuous relationship between the fragility of our environment and its ability to regenerate. The success or failure of this lies in learning how to make the concerns of these invisible aspects of our life support system on Earth visible so that the unforeseeable consequences never eventuate. The forecast for tomorrow’s weather is reliant on our perception of today.

jasminetargett.com

Courtesy the artist

DISCOVERY promotes the work of unrepresented artists. Each issue our editorial team publishes the work of an emerging artist on this page based upon submissions sent to us.

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