In Mary Pearson’s photographs, nature is more than subject matter—it is a partner in the creation of each picture. “I allow the landscape a ‘voice’,” she says. “We are collaborators in the process of image-making.” Shooting on film, she has a strong interest both in capturing the appearance of the natural world and in the physical nature of film itself. In some photographs, she brings film and the environment together to an unusually high degree, actually burying negatives in soil for several weeks before exhuming and printing them. The resulting images are at once an artifact of nature, carrying the traces of decay and decomposition, and a product of the artist’s vision.
But even in her more conventionally produced images, Pearson exhibits a strong connection with the world around her, with a sharp eye for the textures of sky, sea and land, as well as a keen feeling for how light creates moods and transforms scenes. With a pristine, balanced sense of composition, she magnifies nature’s innate qualities, while also leaving the space to let nature speak for itself.
Pearson lives and works in Devon in the United Kingdom and is a Lecturer of Photography at Weston College in Somerset.