Garry Fabian Miller, Sections of England: The Sea Horizon (No. 3)
Lambda C-type print
edition of 5
38.1 x 38.1 cm print size
In 1976, aged just 19, the artist Garry Fabian Miller embarked on a body of work now known as Sections of England: The Sea Horizon, a series of photographs taken from the roof of Fabian Miller's home at Clevedon, near Bristol, looking west across the waters of the Severn Estuary. Taken from this fixed point the lens, film and exposure remained constant, so that all that changes from picture to picture is time, the seasonal cycle, and the artist's implied relationship with place. Each image is a simple square, divided precisely in half along the horizon.
In 1977 eight of these photographs were exhibited at the Serpentine Gallery in London and two years later they formed a principle element of Miller's first one-man show at the Arnolfini in Bristol. For nearly 20 years, they then lay unseen until an enquiry from curators at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York (who realizing the increasing significance of this body of work) brought Miller's early career back into focus.
By that time Miller was established as one of the most progressive artists working with photography in Europe, making camera-less, essentially abstract, images without camera or film: exploring the possibilities of image making with light itself. Encouraged to look back, into his past, Miller published the first forty Sea Horizon images in 1997, randomly selecting these from the eighty transparences that had made up his original project. This spring, sixteen years later, the last of this influential group of photographs are finally being released. They will be exhibited for the first time as a complete sequence of forty works at Edinburgh's Ingleby Gallery from 1st May and alongside the most notable practitioners of land art in the 1970s (including Richard Long, Hamish Fulton and Tony Cragg) in a Hayward Gallery touring show: Uncommon Ground: Land art in Britain 1967-1979, which opens at Southampton City Art Gallery on 10th May.
In the 37 years since these images were made the horizon has continued to be one of Miller's central pre- occupations. Alongside the forty Sea Horizon images Ingleby Gallery will also exhibit a group of new, large format, camera-less works titled The Middle Place which explore the territory which Miller describes as "...the meeting of earth and sky. The horizon offering the possibility of understanding our place within the world and its purpose."
Garry Fabian Miller is represented in numerous private and public collections worldwide including the Metropolitan Museum New York, the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston and the Victoria and Albert Museum, London. His most recent solo exhibition at Ingleby Gallery was The Colours in 2009, and in October 2010 he was one of five artists in Shadow Catchers, a major survey of camera-less photography at the Victoria and Albert Museum. A Little Bit of Magic Realised, at Ingleby Gallery (26 November 2010 - 29 January 2011) ran parallel to Shadow Catchers, and focused on Miller's wider career alongside that of Susan Derges, in the context of early historical photographic experiments by William Henry Fox Talbot and Anna Atkins.