Jacob Black
One Thousand Meters Up :  Art For Air Festival 

Chiang Mai, Thailand : 2023

One Thousand Meters Up in particaption with Studio88 & Art For Air looks to visualise and make a tangible response to the PM 2.5 air pollution problem in Chiang Mai through processes-driven photographic experimentation of the material aspects of both analogue photography and air pollution.

Coming Up For Air takes physical samples of wild and controlled fires a primary cause of the high levels of PM 2.5 within Chiang Mai and northern Thailand. Adding these samples to develop film negatives through a variety of experimental and practical methods, the fires leave a mark on the physical aspects of the film, stripping the emulsion, burning through the layers of acetate and leaving behind visible particle matter. After the negatives have been altered they are photographed individually, exploring the effects of the fires on the physical characteristic of the film. Selected negatives are put into the camera chamber with unexposed film creating double negative photographs which were made in areas surrounding the city of Chiang Mai. The works are both subtly scarred with black lines, heat bubbles, and small fragments of dust and debris. This tactile approach attempts to create a tangible collaboration between the physical effects of air pollution while experimenting with the visual capabilities and limitations of documentary photography in visualising what we cannot see.

Through process and experimenting, the work began to focus entirely on the materiality of analogue photography. Investigating how film negatives can be used in different ways to record, rather than using light. Allowing the exposed negatives to be contorted, distorted and irreversibly changed by the fires with particles of dust and debris merging into the physical elements of the film. The work still uses film to record, but through ways which were not intended by its design.

Exhibition - Studio88 // Weave Artisan Soicety - Chiang Mai 2023