The landscape we grow up in plays a huge yet often underestimated part in our lives. When we take a step back, the importance of this ‘backdrop’ to our everyday becomes clear. Not only is it inextricably bound up in our own personal experiences and memory, but is also integral to our general sense of well being. The early connection we make with the landscape around us shapes us and establishes our sense of place and identity. The relationship is crucial in both developing and reinforcing a responsible and caring attitude in its successful future management.
Alison’s work thus compels the viewer to question their understanding of our ‘own’ landscapes; to reflect and focus upon our role and responsibilities as their custodians. What we protect and preserve within them therefore becomes a constant dilemma, as is, how we can successfully manage and adapt them to sustainably meet our growing needs and demands.
This gives rise to the question of the extent of which the Sciences should play in this management, and is an issue that has always proved controversial, for example in the often heated debate over the need for genetically modified crops. It is a crucial point that highlights a huge need for continuous debate, research and ultimately education in order for us as custodians to make informed decisions of the future of the landscapes over which we preside.