Fergus Mc Shane


The development of new media over the years has paid Peter Jansen back, offering up the chance to travel along with his wife, and his ‘virtual studio’ while still being able to create his wonderful panorama works. At the time, around 1977, Jansen created his first so called 'vista', as he called them. You may recall that 10 years later David Hockney was famously experimenting with a similar technique, called 'joiners'. Jansen, however, is quick to explain that: ‘I certainly would not suggest that he was inspired by mine. It is just a coincidence, or the spirit of time’. The ‘spirit of time’ is a key phrase when talking about Jansen’s own work. Art is a constantly evolving medium, with styles coming and going, always in a flux. The beauty of Jansen’s vistas is that they are truly timeless. Natural images captured in their moment. ‘I am only interested in a landscape or building when I feel that it will deliver me a good piece of art. I knew that the mist of the Victoria Falls would produce a long-drawn white piece. Or that the Namib Desert and the sky above it would result in a good piece of art. So indeed, I only start to work when I accidently stumble across it and I see the opportunity.’ Jansen’s vistas are a glimpse into the freedom he has found in life. He is free  from restrictions in what he captures and how he captures it. All he needs to continue to create is his small but trusty digital camera. There are limitless possibilities of what to ‘paint’ when one can find inspiration anywhere, the view of a hotel room, a desert landscape. Each vista plays with the form of the image, always revealing something new. ‘I am not a photographer, so I am not looking for a photographic style,’ he says. ‘Every picture I take is actually a brush stroke. During the shooting I decide how many brush strokes there will be next to each other, where the concentration of images will be, how many side by side, how many from top down.’ The result is a series of ‘paintings’ showing moments of tranquillity and beauty caught in time. We look forward to any moments yet to come.