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Like a Whisper: Time on the Land
by Hadrian's Wall Working Group


Like a Whisper is a collaborative project photographing traces of human and geologic activity along the path of Hadrian’s Wall, a landscape resulting from years of scarring and healing—leaving marks on the earth much like the erasures and scrapings in old manuscripts on precious vellum resulting in a palimpsest. The Hadrian’s Wall Working Group uses mobile technology to expressively document these layered marks at sites of ancient Roman occupation in Northern England. Our process is like a jazz riff—when one musician offers a phrase, another responds. Each photograph gives rise to others. It is an inventive process where our collective experiences and our shared findings are more significant than any individual’s seeing—and the outcome is expansive.

Hadrian’s Wall is a landscape of ruins. The remains of formal structures and ancient forts are present everywhere. The site defines construction and de-construction. Ancient histories bump up against current realities. Hadrian’s Wall follows an old border—dotted with farmhouses and field walls built with ancient stone dressed by Romans. Like a Whisper is an evocative photographic rendering of ideas about fragmented histories, relics, process, destruction, excavation, and the nature of artistic practice through a collaborative process.