Steven Saunders

Anthropocentric ways of living have created a disconnect with nature. My practice explores
the non-human voices that are being ignored as a result of this. I focus on lichen due to their
relationship with the concept of time which contrasts to that of humans. Lichen is responsive
to the changing atmosphere caused by human pollutants, its gradual growth and sensitivity
to the environment is the opposite of the rapid destruction of the climate by humankind

My work engages with possible futures through speculative narrative. Will lichen still exist in
the future? Could a synthetic lichen take over? In this video installation work the fictional
narrative explores a tension between the environmental benefits of synthetic lichen and the
idea that following the destruction of natural lichen by humans, synthetic lichen is now
catering to our behaviour.

This fictional work is based on intensive fieldwork. I have developed a method of using a
macro lens alongside 3D scanning to capture detailed lichen surfaces. I visit Heysham
weekly and investigate and scan the lichen there. These lichen surfaces are then
manipulated in 3D software Blender, in which they become beautiful digital entities. The
resulting images and video allow the audience to see lichen in a new way. Opening the
audience to the lives of lichen will hopefully present a chance to experience a non-human
centric view of nature and different ways of being and co-existing with the environment.

My film page