Berlin-based illustrator Anna Gille brings out the beauty of the natural environment through her illustration series Window (VPPB). The illustrator has been producing images of various landscapes for the past three years forming the basis of her Windows series, working from a large archive of digital photography featuring different kinds of landscapes including parks, gardens, nature reserves and zoos. She collects such photos alongside screenshots of digital simulations and computer game graphics, widening her archive to encompass a broad range of real and artificial topographic documentation.
The coloured pencil illustration series consists of 11 drawings, mainly based on photographs from an abandoned, savaged park in the middle of Berlin. Speaking to It’s Nice That about Window (VPPB), Anna purposely “chose motifs without a visible horizon and without a possible orientation” to create an effect of unbridled foliage. Anna’s interests lay in these “inaccessible and unknown areas reserved solely for nature but situated right in the middle of urban environments”.
Inspired by her childhood surrounded by forests and highlands, Anna’s illustration practice focuses on drawing her environments. “The memories of these landscapes are very present. I am not only captured by the beauty of these places, but also by an idea of nature, not so much nature’s mystery as an un-contradicted entity, but more as something that we are permanently re-defining and recreating ourselves”, explains Anna.
Anna’s illustrations are beautifully vivid, the fluid sense of blended colour creates dynamic movement, reminiscent of the wind moving through trees and leaves. The illustrator explores the idea of nature through the drawings, “nature is commonly understood as something that is not made by man. In nature, we hope to find something unchangeable, stable and real”, Anna expresses. “But where are the boundaries between the grown and the cultured? To what extent can we use the words ‘artificial’ and ‘natural’, in my opinion a garden can be as fictitious and virtual as a digital, computed image. It seems to be neutral but it is an artificial construct made of natural things and objects; a space between nature and culture”. In a similar respect, Anna’s drawings possess dimensions of realism in their texture and composition despite being hand-drawn interpretations of a specific place. In Window (VPPB), Anna attempts to “dissolve the oppositions between natural and artificial, virtual and real by bringing out the beauty of these places”.
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