This article is part of an on-going series of reviews on titles from Princeton Architectural Press.
In The Wilds: Drawings by Nigel Peake presents a collection of drawings through which Nigel Peake remembers and re-envisions his childhood. The wilds into which the reader is brought, is the small Nothern Irish village in which the author grew up. A place considered to be the middle of nowhere by most visitors. In his introduction, Peake explicitly states his preference for the rural over the urban. The beauty of the country lies in its natural state, whereas the city is an artificially created place.
Peake’s previous career as an architect permeates his drawings. For example, the “Fallen Shed” does not merely depict a shed with its roof caved in or walls collapsed. Rather, the architectural elements that created the shed have been deconstructed into a collage displaying the different elements that created the shed. The theme of deconstructing objects into their individual parts creates an interesting, almost pointillist, lens through which to view the Irish countryside.
Peake is successful in his endeavor and In The Wilds presents a unique and insightful look into the landscape of the author’s childhood. The drawings are presented with minimal explanation, all their natural beauty to shine through and the reader to discover the wilds for himself.
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