My primary focus has been on landscape, not in the traditional sense of depicting bucolic scenes or grand vistas, but rather the world outside of the human sphere. It is a world populated by trees. As I understand it, trees move by their growing, albeit at a glacial pace. A tree’s shape, therefore, is an expression of its behaviour, an accumulation of its actions up to the present point in time. This understanding of the morphology of trees informs how I see them, how I render them in my drawings.
Growing up in England I lived on the border between countryside and the urban environment. This experience heightened my awareness of the dichotomy between human industry and the natural world. As a rule, I have observed nature on an intimate scale, walking through woods and meadows. In this way I think of landscape art as a bridge between our culture and nature. It is valuable as such in pointing to the world beyond human activity. Here my aim is not to depict nature as pristine or in an edenic form. Rather, my drawings are the result of a contemplative process where I focus on looking for and highlighting the formal qualities in nature itself, which are free of the predictability of human artifice. I try to let nature speak for itself.
Hugh Alcock, 2019