Artist Blog

Every week an artist whose single image was published by Der Greif is given a platform in which to blog about contemporary photography.

Walking

Jul 28, 2020 - Ian C Bates

Walking. Miles and miles. Watch out for stray dogs, swooping crows in the spring, no trespassing signs and the never-ending dirt roads with nothing in sight. Yes, driving may get you there but walking is my way of looking past low hanging fruit. It slows down the process of getting to know a place and allows you to almost literally bump into people. It’s like staring at a bird from far away thinking it’s one thing until you put the binoculars to your eyes and discover it’s completely different and new. You just need to get a little closer and your car can’t fit inside a bar.

 

The photographer Robert Adams is probably the most prominent walking inspiration in my practice. You can see how he moves through space in many of his books. A quote of his that explains what walking allows the photographer to do is not obviously about walking, but about looking deeper. I think that is what walking is all about.

 

“By Interstate 70: a dog skeleton, a vacuum cleaner, TV dinners, a doll, a pie, rolls of carpet….Later, next to the South Platte River: algae, broken concrete, jet contrails, the smell of crude oil…. What I hope to document, though not at the expense of surface detail, is the form that underlies this apparent chaos.” – Robert Adams