Natalie Del Castillo
is currently finishing her B.A. in Fine Art at UC Santa Cruz. Analog photography, alternative photographic printing processes, and intaglio are among her various art practices that all surround the subjects of human connection and the connections that we humans have to the earth and all its creatures. She works in this particular field of focus, digging to find the roots that connect us all as beings that share this planet. To add another voice to her message, photographer Wolfgang Tillmans has described his beliefs in spirituality and modern times to be focused on human connection. “The meaning of life, he argues, is not found in devotion to eternal existence but instead in caring for what we know will be lost.”
How do you grow when it feels like there is no space? When the space you live in feels constricting and restraining? What do you do to feel accomplished with the way you spent your day? “Shadow Recordings” are a collection of cyanotype prints that respond to these questions that I am constantly asking myself in this time of shelter in place.
To record or capture the shadow of something or someone is to document the evidence of a presence that once was, or is. By using the natural rays of the sun to make the prints of plants, one can’t help but feel like they are recording time as well as space. In documenting the shadows that different green beings cast around my home, I am able to connect with the temporal space I occupy and feel grounded in these times of anxiously empty spaces.
The shadows in this collection belong to the living things that were here before me, and will live in the house far after I am gone. I am understanding my place in this time by working in the physical space I exist in and connecting to the beings that are living proof of making the best with the square plot of soil that is their home.
The 2020 Irwin Scholars are
Aarón Martínez, Anastasia Oleson, Angel Gonzales, Chloe Murr, Dominic Ramirez, Edgar Cruz, Emma McWaid, Jocelyn Lee, Joshua Zupan, Morgan Tomfohr, Natalie Del Castillo, Rodrigo Ramos, Veriche Blackwell