Collecting: Cyanotypes by Janelle Lynch
Clip from documentary 'Endless Forms Most Beautiful' by Mia Allen
8 June 2023

Cyanotypes by Janelle Lynch



Accompanying Janelle Lynch's solo exhibition Endless Forms Most Beautiful, this presentation showcases smaller cyanotypes from the same body of work, which was created during six weeks of solitude along the Atlantic Ocean in Amagansett, New York, at the end of 2022.

Using fallen botanicals and animal remains found on the dunes and surrounding nature reserve, Lynch says that the cyanotype medium allowed her to explore her "deep kinship with nature in a new way - more directly than ever before". Citing spirital photography as an influence for this series, the medium has also facilitated Lynch in exploring her interests in "imagining what lies beyond visual perception" and liberated her from the "limitations of photographing the physical world."

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Photography by Mia Allen

In September 2022, I went to Amagansett, New York, on the Eastern End of Long Island for six weeks of solitude. Trees, birds, rabbits, deer, and spiders were my among companions. Isolated with only a bicycle for transportation, I was fully immersed in my practice and a brand new oceanside landscape.

I began to collect remains on the beach and in the dunes–an osprey wing, driftwood, and sea plants. I biked to a nearby flower farm and retrieved flowers that had fallen to the ground. I was compelled to make records of these natural elements and by so doing, affirming the fundamental value of life in all of its manifestations.

Photography by Mia Allen

Formally, the color blue suggests the faraway. As John O’Donohue said, “Distance loves blue.” Goethe said that rather than coming toward us or hemming us in, blue draws us after it into the distance. With cyanotypes, I could create depictions of the spiritual realm to which I had a growing need to connect. And I became even more excited about the medium as I discovered alchemy’s vital role.

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