Arizona Hollows – Dan Nathan's Paralland

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For this series, Nathan travelled to two separate locations, the Sahara Desert, and the border between Arizona/Utah in the USA.
Although one set of images was captured in America and one in Africa, what unifies them is the powerful and timeless effect of natural forces in melding and shaping both terrains.
The concept behind this series is an exploration that contrasts the topography of these two extreme and opposite parts of the world.
The images have purposely been drawn together – juxtaposed to create a series of graphic, monochrome compositions.
The striations and contours depicted, although many thousands of miles apart, have the same timeless, organic textural imprint that nature has wrought over time.
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A powerful constant that unifies this series is the shifting nature of sand – both desert and sandstone rock.
By freezing in time these particular moments of geographical stasis, he has created a way of suggesting permanence in a shifting landscape.
To revisit them would reveal small but significant transformations in erosion and deposition and so these images capture moments in time that can never be replicated.

Nathan has chosen to include the time of each image’s exposure using Greenwich Mean Time to further illustrate the parallel nature of locations thousands of miles apart. The effect of time is fundamental to the state of evolution of these landscapes as through millennia they have been in a permanent, slowly-evolving state of geological metamorphosis.
For the past twenty years Dan Nathan hasn’t taken a photograph. That was until two years ago… His newly found relationship with making photographs was a direct result of trying to find some meaning in his life after some extreme loss.
Nathan was passionate about photography in his formative years until faced with a choice of continuing on a path of making still images or moving into film. He opted for the moving image and in doing so went on to win numerous awards as a television commercials director.
The unexpected upside of his experience as a director transformed the way in which he saw the world, and has now seen him nurture an aspect of his creativity as a fine art photographer.
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His photographic works are primarily large-scale, vast and sparse landscapes. Nathan “relishes isolation and sparseness in uncomplicated terrains and always looks for elements that otherwise get overlooked.”
“This latest series of work stems from a desire to find connection and unity in juxtaposed landscapes. Terrains that are inherently opposites now have a relative point of connection.
Shapes, tone and contrast highlight purity with a sense of calmness and isolation. His images are very simple, yet complex in detail,” the gallery said in a statement.
Dan Nathan – Paralland is on show from 16th September to 4 November 2016 at Serena Morton II, 345 Ladbroke Grove, London, W10 6HA. For further information please visit here.

Tom Seymour

Tom Seymour is an Associate Editor at The Art Newspaper and an Associate Lecturer at London College of Communication. His words have been published in The Guardian, The Observer, The New York Times, Financial Times, Wallpaper* and The Telegraph. He has won Writer of the Year and Specialist Writer of the year on three separate occassions at the PPA Awards for his work with The Royal Photographic Society.