hannah downing
fine art

a view from above

“A view from above” is a series of paintings developed in 2009 but which is still being added to. It consists of large (4ftx5ft) panoramic views and also small (8inx10in) 'glimpses' of toy figures against a blank landscape.

As a continuation of interest in surveillance within public space, these paintings borrow from the downward looking gaze associated with such technologies (CCTV cameras, Google-earth or live streamed city webcams for example). The work in the series focuses on the all-seeing and ever-present aspect of modern image-based surveillance. It is about the gaze, the act of viewing itself, as suggested by the title. The use of toy figures as passive ‘actors’ in their constructed landscape is motivated by a view that observation of this type is ultimately oppressive to the sense of freedom in the human spirit.


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