In the summer of 2013 James Winnett was commissioned by Environmental Art Festival Scotland to produce one of the four main public art projects for the inaugural EAFS festival taking place across Dumfries and Galloway. This video aims to provide an insight into the project and the practical processes behind its development.
The work comprises of a gravity-fed fountain placed downstream of a dramatic highland waterfall. Powered entirely by the immense natural energy of water, the intervention has been developed to explore
a number of related themes from debates on sustainability and energy use to questions of landscape identity and representation.
The work refers back to eighteenth century Scotland when a radical shift occured in the popular perception of Highland landscapes, transforming them from hostile wildernesses to be avoided to awe-inspiring destinations to be experienced. Artists were at the centre of this process, developing an essential romantic iconography of which dramatic waterfalls played a key role. The fountain too has long been a focal point for great landscaped gardens as a tool for taming, containing and re-presenting nature. In this way the fountain encourages a reconsideration of the very nature of nature.
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