"Once in a while, one comes across an artist who challenges our perceptions. Oliver Barnett is such an artist"
- Damian Nixon, Curator
Curated by Damian Nixon
Produced by Flora Fairbairn
Parkside, Heath Farm, Swerford, nr. Chipping Norton, Oxfordshire, OX7 4BN
Presented by Flora Fairbairn and Damian Nixon, this solo exhibition brings Barnett back to his birthplace, Oxfordshire, to showcase a new series of large-scale photographs communicating the power and mystery of our natural world.
Barnett’s photographs depict alternative worlds: mystical forests and spiritual landscapes that Barnett has discovered during his many explorations of the wilds of South Africa, as well as closer to home in the beech forests of Devon. In Small Gods, Barnett’s lens leads the viewer on a metaphysical journey that throws up questions about our ongoing, symbiotic relationship with nature. The natural world is presented both as an environment that contains us and an organism of which we are an integral part. A pervasive animism that runs through the work is both a revival of an ancient respect for nature’s power, and a reminder of our present responsibilities in an unprecedented era of human impact on the earth’s wild habitats.