Beneath Us, 2019
Photographic and sonic installation
Beneath Us is a photographic and sonic installation, produced by the collaboration of Radha Chaddah and Dan Bédard. The subject matter is the hidden realms that exist at a scale invisible to us. Chaddah removed tiny specks of wax from the bottom of a beehive, coated them in gold and photographed them using a scanning electron microscope that can see 180,000 times life size. Bédard created the sonic score by morphing traditional instrument sounds with bee sounds and then pushing this blend through a digital topography of Chaddah’s photographs using software that brings out hidden resonances. Beneath Us is titled to reflect the difference between the perception and reality of our place in nature. Humans largely behave as though all other creatures are beneath us in a hierarchy of life. In reality, we rely on bees for our survival, while they have no need of us. Bees are a supportive foundation beneath us. This work symbolizes the invisibility of non-human narratives, the essential interrelatedness and interdependency of living things, and the beauty and fragility of these relationships.