Headlands Center for the Arts

Ruth Watson

New Zealand/Australia | visual
Artist in Residence Program 2015

Artist Statement

Cartographic conventions, combined with unusual materials or methods, can provoke new ways of considering our perception of the world. This often has political implications, for what we take for granted about centres, peripheries, norms or values. Art can be a proposition, of disruption or resistance, difference and hope; these are my aims, resulting in a reorientation of the image of the world.

While At Headlands

My ongoing interest in the varied acts of cartography will continue with works (photography, collecting, performing) investigating sites around the residency. With a working title of Cartographies of Dirt I wish to see how I can construct activities that represent movements from unfamiliar to familiar; from small social ‘climates’ to larger, outdoor ones. This is the territory of the map, shifting the uncertain towards certainty, with all the problems that creates and reveals. Working in a new environment – social, geographical, meterological, geological – seems appropriate for such investigations. I am interested in the former nuclear bunker, open to the public on monthly occasions; technologies built into the dirt is fascinating, to someone coming from a country that doesn’t (yet?) host such structures.

Selected Video

Violable Withic Century, 2014; single channel HD video, with Dan Nash.

Selected Works