For What It’s Worth II
Johannesburg I 21 Apr to 6 Jun 2016
Dillon Marsh, a Cape Town based artist, uses photography and image manipulation to depict the exploitation of mineral resources at various mines in South Africa in his art. Marsh explains that he uses photography to explore the relationship between human beings and the environment. Marsh furthermore states that “my work has often isolated and emphasised specific features of a particular landscape, from suburban areas to more desolate rural scenes – usually elements that illustrate how we engage both deliberately and unintentionally with the world around us”.
About two years ago, Marsh took his photography one step further by introducing computer generated imagery into his photographs in an attempt to reveal underlying features or dynamics he wouldn’t be able to show with photography alone. “For What It’s Worth was born out of my his curiosity about what a mine’s output in precious metals or stones would look like when visually juxtaposed with the mine itself”.
Marsh first explored the copper mines of Namaqualand and the series soon grew to include diamond mines in the Northern Cape as well. More recently, Marsh started investigating the gold fields of the Witwatersrand Basin and the production of platinum group metals on a national scale. For What It’s Worth depicts Marsh’s exploration of these two precious metals.
“Apart from satisfying my own curiosity, For What It’s Worth is very much about providing a unique perspective on an industry that has played such a large part in South African history. As much as these efforts have shaped development, they have also come with social and environmental costs. My intention is not to take a particular position on the matter, but to prompt viewers to come to their own conclusions”.