Aesthetic Foraging at Jacobs Ladder

Katalina Caliendo

Katalina Caliendo (2019)

As it can be for many others, long walks are both inspiring and rejuvenating to my practice and well being. My making practice has always been responsive to landscape, not only by the solace gained, but also how the act of walking adds to my visual collection of moments. While I often document this process of aesthetic foraging with photographs and found objects these choices are arbitrary to the overall experience, as it is in the time spent ruminating both during and after these walks that my ideas form. No matter where I have lived or where I travel time spent in this way materialises a greater intimacy with place and myself within in it. I am fascinated by how landscapes, environments, and the things that make them enlivened are continuously shaped by the symbiotic interactions and collaborative tensions between both life and non-life, the tangible and the intangible.

On a recent walk in the Peaks I took notes on long and short moments which struck me, the likes of which resolved in the beginnings of a novice poem.

I took a winter walk in the peaks with Sheenie before Christmas. We took the train from Manchester to Edale and walked from the train to the Pennine Way path and saw:

A gate with a map of the way with 1 large dead pigeon face down in leaves
A recessed pathway which was sunken below the banks where the roots of the trees were twisted in all directions, knotted together, clinging and strong, like sculptural greetings to the trail
The most brilliant reddish brown farewell from this seasons ferns on the hillsides
A straight flagstone pathway through crumbling sheepfolds
The mist moving low across the farmhouses
Sheep with cow print legs and long dreaded wool
A ruin in an enclosure
A stone bridge covered in mosses
And I saw:
A cairn with snowy hills behind it
Patches of ice on the limestone stairs of Jacobs Ladder
The heather sparkle in the bog when my boot fell into a sink hole
A stranger that helped us find our way that was was walking to find solace from the loss of a child
(his wife later told me after tea in their home )
The light move brilliantly across the expanse of tall grass-orbs, both shadow and reflection like the light of a solar eclipse
A red-orange sunset of California against the green meadows of England and through the tree silhouettes from my childhood in the Pacific Northwest
Places where fragments of both manufactured-tile and rock were aggregated together and then broken-up to create a path in the mud/earth

Katalina Caliendo (2019)
Katalina Caliendo (2019)

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