Richard Hill the field walker collects, arranges and photographs objects he finds on his walks.
The arrangement is a mixture of intuitive context and narrative; objects are joined together in the background, but also soak through Hill’s experience, thoughts and reflections.
“The fieldwork pieces are always generated from what I find on a walk; I never add anything other than the background paper/card and the walks are always only about an hour long, so they’re pretty self-editing! So sometimes the walk won’t result in anything. I’ve not really considered them as a science as psychogeographers might, say, but what is always fascinating is that part of a place throws up certain materials which hint at that kind of a relationship. I usually find pieces of clay pipe at plough turns, self-evident really; and flint knaps on hill ridges overlooking dry valleys. The best walks are the ones that turn up the unexpected (rush chairs; old signs; tools; old bikes) like the modern plastic items that I know will be three generations’ pieces of broken crockery. These are a sort of future history, I like that.
“I can’t deny the decorative appeal of making them but I think it’s more to do with constantly looking for meaning, making a sense of the relationships that appeal, at least to me. If there’s any nostalgia it would be that use/wear/ageing are appealing visual qualities, but any further meaning?
I’m trying to make these meaningless and they’re more of an ‘un-wiring’. If there are narratives, well, they’re your own. We had Peter Kennard visit Winchester and seeing his work for the first time, the sheer impact of those juxtapositions, just with image, must have left a mark. That crashing things together can upset all kinds of emotions. And Heartfield, Peter Blake, and slightly more contemporary commercial artists I met a couple of years later, Russell Mills and David Hiscock.