A few years ago, Brooklyn-based photographer Thomas Jackson was busy crafting homemade light installations out of sticks, wire mesh, and leaves. He’d take them out into the forest and hang them on trees or clamp them to light-stands (which he removed post-production), and add eerie effects like fluorescent lights, gel, strobes, and smoke bombs. The resulting scenes, consisting of a spooky streak of colored light amidst a dark forest, have a sense of anxiety to them, as if something horrible is about to happen.
The theme of fear (of nature, or of change) runs consistently throughout Jackson’s work, and is readily apparent in his latest series, Emergent Behavior. This time, instead of light and smoke, he’s made sculptures of colorful Post-It Notes, cheese balls, glow sticks, yarn, paper plates, and other man-made materials. The swarms of stuff juxtaposed with unexpected environments (like the woods or city-scapes) invite viewers to interpret everyday objects in new ways.
See more of Jackson’s work here.