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Janusz Wrobel

Fine Art Photography

An Aqueous Mind


When we see something, it is actually our brain's interpretation of patterns of light reaching our eyes. How we perceive those patterns depends on our own experiences, or on what we can draw from our culture's vast pool of related experiences and interpretations. When facing something new to which no available interpretations seem to apply, we strive to create new ones.

I grew to adulthood exposed primarily to European "humanized nature"—i.e., environments shaped by many generations of people to serve their needs. When I settled in North America and began travelling through a variety of its environments, my prior understanding of natural processes was inadequate for interpreting what I saw.  The Great Canadian Shield became my open book and a giant Petri dish, offering clarity and transparency for my observations. My grasp of fundamentals in physics and chemistry became invaluable, and the scope of my interest gradually expanded.

Soon it became evident that everything I perceived there was dependent on two properties of water: the polarity of the water molecule and its thermal storage capacity. These properties define and make possible all life as we know it. What I saw was the result of working processes developed across an enormous timeframe which formed and maintained living conditions for all species within each environment. Everything happens there for a reason, including the accelerated momentum of current environmental changes.

An Aqueous Mind is both an exhibition and the conclusion of an extended process of redefining my relationship with the natural world. Several exhibitions of my work during the last ten years focused on selective aspects of this changing relationship. Above all, continuous lifelong use of the photographic medium has allowed the accumulation of visual evidence essential to how I objectify changes to my perception of reality.

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