When Marc Alcock relocated from Britain to California in 2010, he found himself thrust into an alien landscape; alone in a new world. The photographer and art director trained his lens on the visual language of this strange environment to create a series he titled ‘Space Travel’, in reference to his adventure in a place unfamiliar to him.
“The dramatic landscape of the American South West felt like the terrain of a foreign planet, let alone a foreign country”, explains Alcock of his first impressions of his new home. “I was seeing these scenes from the perspective of someone who had left everything behind in the UK to start a new life, in a place I knew nobody.” During his early days in America, he spenthis free time driving around the country exploring. The unfamiliar, alien landscapes he encountered seemed to visually echo his feelings of dislocation.
“Many of these road trips I spent traveling alone”, he continues. “Looking back, I’ve realized that the solitude imbued the images with a sense on alienation. My state of mind unconsciously coming through in the tone of the images. As the series developed, I began seeking out other landscapes elsewhere in the world that fit the atmosphere of the early images made in the US.” For Alcock, location and emotion come together in this series, though there is a deliberate lack of narrative, the images retain poignancy. As he concludes of the project; “I feel like my sensitivity to seeing is never more acute than when I’m seeing a place for the first time”.