Statement of Intent
m. ceolin is a multidisciplinary process and material-based maker/thinker active in a series of creative works which engage natural ecologies and entities. Based in the Algoma Region, Ceolin considers the natural environment his medium and attempts to engage the inhabitants and components of various environments through imaginings, interactions, interventions, activities and story-telling. Ceolin’s work has always been concerned with concepts of nature, as well as modes of human relationship with landscape and wilderness. Many of the current questions in his practice have arisen from a period of ‘immersive solitude’ on the land in consideration of his place/position/role there.
At present, Ceolin’s studio work involves numerous projects based in research and interaction with the interrelationships of entities and ecologies (plants, animals, etc..) through considerations of their relationships to human histories and impositions on the land through per/con-ceptual lenses spanning cultural / social perspectives. Through the application of these per/con-ceptual ‘lenses’ or ‘devices’ to the examination of these varied perspectives, definitions and, in turn, systems of scientific approach have conjured the desire to define new approaches to the terms and methods defined as ‘naturalism’. In examining the challenges and dilemmas presented by romantic notions of the naturalist at work ‘discovering’ and in turn controlling the wilds through taxonomic categorization of collected specimens, Ceolin delves at engaging certain concepts which belie some major perceptive barriers. Specifically examining those constructs which are exceedingly colonial and manipulative which have established the majority of Western guiding principals of understanding Nature and, in turn, ecology.
Works stemming from this process have instigated the pursuit of defining a form of ‘contemporary naturalism’. The intent instead of focusing on the approach of historic precepts of naturalism that objectify the dynamics and entities in an ecology as other, this notion approaches naturalism through a participatory and integrated standpoint, examining the implications of social/cultural/lingustic/taxonomic/perceptual and ecologic methodologies. Minor linguistic shifts (such as ‘the landscape we walk upon’ vs. ‘the landscape we are in’) and examining perspective shifts within our viewing and classification of ecological entities and systems, engaging queries such as, “Would one do to oneself what one does to the land?” and “Can we consider an entity extant of its ecology?” define his practice.
In a world that more constantly realizes the importance of a sustainable social/cultural relationship with our respective ecologies, Ceolin feels these systems and their implications are calling out for critical examination.