Terrain is defined as a field of interest, or a geographic area. It is also a description of the physical features and surface variants of land that, over time, have occurred due to forces, such as: pressure, friction, exposure, and immersion; resulting in: folding, crumpling, laceration, slumping and disintegration.
Three artists: Matt Higgins (Australia), Lisa Clunie (NZ) and Ellen Smith (NZ) are makers of photographic images that have direct physical presence- a trace of touch, a working of the surface. Although having visibly distinct approaches, their practices mutually stem from a desire to “get back to the elemental forces of nature itself”. Higgins lacerates and masks the photographic surface to create abstract chemigrams, Clunie crumples and folds paper to make photograms that oscillate between two and three dimensions, and Smith explores the absence and presence of light in direct contact prints. Terrain maps out their shared intrigue with the latent potential of the photographic image, and the transformation of the material features of photography.
 Jolly, Martyn, Cherine Fahd, and Suzanne Buljan, The Alchemists: Rediscovering Photography in the Age of the Jpeg, (Sydney: Sydney College of the Arts, 2015), 6.
The documents posted below are artist statements and bios for Ellen Smith, Lisa Clunie and Matt Higgins respectively. 'Terrain' shows in Room 3 of Photospace Gallery from 17th June to 3rd July, 2016.
Ellie (Ellen) Smith, Working it Out: Kawakawa Leaf 1, 2016
Lisa Clunie, detail of Untitled (revaluation after Moholy-Nagy), 2013 Unique silver gelatin print
Matt Higgins, detail of Pathways in Epoxy Enamel 1-9, 2014 Unique silver-gelatin chemigram