Lu La Buzz
A kilometre above the low-lying flats of Cambridgeshire
I launched myself into the sky.
With a rush of air I was released from the aircraft,
pulled to the slipstream and freed into space;
a transient shape in the timeless ethereal world.
Dropping to the distance; fabric fluttered, I was pulled
upright, suspended under an air-filled canopy.
Through tranquil clouds I drifted down; down towards a
patchwork veneer and the fossil rich clay that lay beneath.
Clay informs my practice. With its pliant yielding strata it is
the embodiment of time, the relic of a distant age,
widespread beneath us, but concealed from view. For the
last 12 years I have travelled hundreds of kilometres
over land and sea to explore and reveal its hidden strata.
In my video Touching Earth I used the gravitational force of
the earth itself to draw me down towards the clay.
The work involved learning how to jump from an aircraft and
parachute down to earth.
After studying geological maps to identify the underlying
strata of 23 parachute drop zones in the UK, the low-lying
landscape of Cambridgeshire was singled out for its rich
bedrock of Ampthill Clay.
This clay, in which I discovered an early oyster, was formed
150 million years ago at the bottom of an ancient sea.