Courtney Crawford was born in Maine in 1993, and studied Photography at the Lesley University College of Art and Design in Boston. She has previously worked as an intern for Jack Lueders-Booth and was chosen to exhibit in the Student Exhibition at Boston University’s Photographic Resource Center (PRC). Her large-format photographs are influenced by the cultural and historical context of the landscape; and through that, are attempts to find the sublime rapture that we once had for the land. She now works and lives in Central Virginia in search of Romanticism within the Southern landscape.
Bury your hands in the weeds. So, the soil may be closer to hear.
Within the Fenway Victory Gardens, there are lands within lands. For the ability to be able to work on a piece of land, a commercial lease has been created, which is considered a privilege not only because of the land’ history, but also because of its place within the urban landscape. Though not bound by the traditional ties of marking territory, the existence of a name on a waiting list harkens back to futile stakes driven into fertile ground for plots of land that are rented instead of owned.
However, in the absence of the gardeners (during the winter months), the land reclaims itself; its roots and veins extending beyond the chicken wire into other fabricated ‘Edens’. And, even though their discrete barriers have become buried and overcome with growth and detritus; those who ‘create’ continue to re-unite with the land, but only after the soil has thawed. Soon their wheelbarrows will be stained with fresh compost, and their lawn chairs bleached by the noonday sun.
Perhaps, by surveying these gardeners and their plots through a continual re-visitation of the land, they will live beyond the daily, almost ritual routine of tending to nature and exist beyond the fences containing them – as if an archive of labor.
To view more of Courtney’s work please visit her website.