Chrystal Stephens 

Summer Harvest Story, 2020

84.1 x 59.4 cm
digital c-print


"This work depicts food photographed on cloth printed with an image of the compost (pre-rotted) which contributed to it's creation."

About the artist:

Anna Chrystal Stephens (b. 1984, Plymouth) lives and works in London and South West UK. She uses sculpture, action and photography to explore sustainable living strategies, self-sufficiency and the transition between nomadic and settled modes of survival. She investigates ancient practices like harvesting wild plants for food or medicine and integrated approaches to growing, learning about the edibility, uses and requirements of plants as a way to viscerally understand rural and urban habitats.

Referring to camping as an activity representative of desperate survival but also of leisure and outdoor learning experiences, she investigates how outdoor skills and prehistoric crafts and can improve wellbeing and enhance human ecological understanding, dissolving the frontier between domesticity and wildness.

She uses natural materials, recycled materials, defunct camping paraphernalia and survival gear to make sculptures and objects with real or imagined purposes, making links between ancient techniques and contemporary tools. Their aesthetics are a celebration of attempts to connect with wilderness and a reaction to anxiety about climate breakdown.

Her practice includes the gathering and dispersal of survival skills and craft processes through walks, discussions and workshops. She is also part of artist group Vulpes Vulpes.