...work in progress
Picture locations in no particular order:
Glenbrook, Auckland, NZ
St. Joseph's Convent, Hiruhārama/ Jerusalem, NZ
Whanganui River, Hiruhārama/ Jerusalem, NZ
Māngere Wastewater Treatment Plant, Auckland, NZ
Ground Water Mirror is about a relationship with water that has changed since the modern era of industrialisation, reflecting on the western notion of human domination over water and the alienation from it that followed a dependance on its subjugation.
The title is a potential (mis)translation of the german word Grundwasserspiegel – the upper "surface" of groundwater, beneath which soil or rock is saturated with water. Aside from water's obvious mirror-like qualities, there is an expectation that follows contemplation of water – for it to provide a solution to the questions or anxieties we project onto it.
However we choose to describe water, we inevitably return to ourselves and our own experiences with water, using descriptions for which water itself has no name. Water seeps, runs, falls and flows; it is familiar yet strange, both violent and nurturing, threatening, cleansing, vulnerable and powerful – water is binary in this way.
As we gaze into the mirror it holds up for us, we too easily imagine that what we behold is Nature when in fact we see the reflection of our own unexamined longings and desires – William Cronon, The Trouble with Wilderness; or, Getting Back to the Wrong Nature, 1995