My new book Below The Surface is now available for purchase below.
Below the Surface explores the tenuous balance of growth, transformation, death, and decay, using the magnitude of the seen as a gateway to the hidden and undiscovered. It calls to our most ancient and primal self, speaking of trails to be trod, hunts to be ventured, and dark leafy worlds to be explored—all just Below the Surface.
Read the inspired intro to Below The Surface by Joel Rudnick below.
The forest is a place where we find ourselves alone. A place where we feel compelled to explore, to search without a goal, and tread without apparent realization. It comes naturally to us, this pull. We do not wonder why we are in it, but succumb to it nonetheless—to the mystery of its depths.
This place of deep inquiry has no hierarchy, no authority of which to speak. In it we are confronted with the enigma of self, and its relations—foot to rock, eye to horizon, and nose to decaying, unfettered leaf. Our self is revealed and deconstructed in our succumbing to our journey. In this place, humanity’s primordial being developed and is summoned back to in its re-entry. We are re-exposed to our fundamentals.
We have learned much traveling the forests, and forgotten much in becoming sedentary. If our feet do not, our mind wanders and weakens. If we are not active, our bodies fall into disrepair. We encountered strangers in menace and strangeness by necessity, both threatening and sustaining our livelihood. We learned to remember where camp was, and its centrality of warmth and the promise of our kin’s embrace. We learned the dichotomies of life: territory known and unknown, friend and foe, order and chaos.
In this place where we formalized our behavior and its multiple intricacies, art deconstructs that formalization. Herein, the art of photography is most poignant: its abstraction is that of the artist’s visual space. Like memory that is a piece of time, photography freezes mutability into thin slices. The memory repeatedly revisited becomes an integral and implicit part of self, while one repressed is resisted equally so. The two, the repeated and the repressed, ultimately have equal weight in our behavior and decision, in who we are.
Likewise, Below the Surface explores the tenuous balance of growth, transformation, death, and decay, using the magnitude of the seen as a gateway to the hidden and undiscovered. It calls to our most ancient and primal self, speaking of trails to be trod, hunts to be ventured, and dark leafy worlds to be explored—all just Below the Surface.