Fresh Window is pleased to present the solo exhibition Cameratrap with recent works by the Australian artist Linda Tegg. In Cameratrap Tegg examines through photography, video and installation the viewing behaviors that extist between species, and the implications of animal representation. The underlying assertion of Linda Tegg’s work is that the contingent viewing conditions through which we orient ourselves in the world is constantly shifting. Tegg’s work provides us with an almost scientific observation of our surroundings and makes us question reality, technology, cultural connotations and imagery. As Linda Tegg explains “My work operates within an ecology of imagery that form ideas of nature. I work with non-human kinds and aspire towards a phenomenological project that extends the horizon of our perceptual world and reflects upon the impulses and methods used to draw others into the world-for-us. Cameratrap is a shifting set of images that touches on the impulses and implications of animal representation. Through this work I become entangled in technology, representation and a desire to connect with the more-than-human world.
Camera traps are automated cameras deployed by hunters and wildlife enthusiasts to remotely capture images of animals. These consumer level products are widely available. Their skin is usually photographic, taking on the pattern of bark or a collage designed to camouflage outdoors. I collect them as natural objects and arrange them in my studio. While these cameras are apparatus I can’t help but see them as organisms with a sensorium of their own.
The cameras are motion activated and emit an infrared flash so they can see in the dark. This infrared flash renders all animals as white. The white deer has a particular amnesty amongst many hunters. Revered in both British and Native American cultures the white deer signals spiritual quests and messages from other worlds. However, all deer seen through the camera trap appear as both white and killable.
From the museum of natural history, to the eco-safari, to YouTube, interest in animals is considered to rest largely on the surface. Through cameratrap, I also consider adaptations humans make to their own surface appearance in attempts to embed themselves in an environment. I wonder what the hunter achieves when their prey doesn’t show up; or what we understand natural behavior to be when the when the wildlife documentary doesn’t play out as we expect.”
Linda Tegg, who was born in Australia, received degrees from The University of Melbourne and RMIT University and is currently pursuing and MFA at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. The Artist was the Samstag Scholar of 2014, The Georges Mora Foundation Fellow of 2012 and has received numerous Australia Council for the Arts, and Arts Victoria Grants. Recent Solo exhibitions include; Grasslands, The State Library of Victoria, Melbourne, 2014; Choir, Westspace, Melbourne 2014; Coexistence, MARSO Galleria, Mexico City, 2012. Selected group exhibitions include; Imperceptibly and Slowly opening, Sector 2337, Chicago, 2015; Don’t Talk to Strangers, Random Institute, Brooklyn, 2014 and NEW13, Australian Centre for Contemporary Art, Melbourne, 2013.