Power in the Land was an initiative in North Wales that brought together a dynamic, diverse and multi-talented group of 10 artists to engage with issues of nuclear energy and the land. Coinciding was the shutdown of last nuclear power station in Wales, Wylfa in Anglesey, Power in the Land prsented works in video, sound, performance, installation and in graphic and photographic forms. The exhibition toured several venues across Wales and across Europe.
Project website: http://powerintheland.co.uk/
Fata Morgana is Chris Oakley’s film work exploring the Wylfa site’s physical, political and cultural contexts. The location of Wylfa in relation to the land and seascapes is central to the work. Digital interventions in the footage shot at the site explore the utopian mythology that surrounded the birth of the nuclear energy industry.
The work investigates parallels between the fundamental invisibility of the nuclear fission process alongside the more visible cultural and political messages woven around the industry. He uses atmospheric optical phenomena as a metaphor for these often contradictory aspects of nuclear power. The site is envisioned as a Fata Morgana, a complex form of mirage that is seen in a narrow band above the horizon. This parallels the processes of transmutation and transformation inherent in nuclear fission, and the elusiveness of the truths surrounding it.
Author: 2K video
Duration: 3′ 30″
Year of production: 2015