david edward allen
texts & documentation

- harvest

Brandenburg and Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Germany, 2004 - 2015

Looped VHS/Hi8 and HD video, 32:19 mins.

“…The distinction between the natural world and cultivated land is reprised in the video harvest (2004-15), which shows silent footage of a wood in which a large tree is being cut, and eventually felled. As the screen fades to black the sustained howl of the chainsaw, produced as a separate audio-track, fills the gallery space. Its tone is aggressive and relentless, rising and falling as it encounters knots of resistance – it upsets the human ear, fraying the nerves; Finally, the noise is cut, the great tree tumbles over, evacuating the air, as if drawing a final breath. We attach little sentiment to harvesting corn, but we reserve special affection for trees, whose loss is mourned. Allen, by contrast, explains the recordings as a ‘kind of reversed sculptural process by removing material from the space in which it has formed.’…” -taken from the text for the exhibition “graft” by Nicola Oxley and Nicholas de Oliviera