At the present time there are many areas of the UK where no cell phone signal can be accessed. Such areas, on the one hand, represent nothing more than a failing of the cellular network - breaks in the infrastructure that will eventually be rectified by future generations of cell phone technology. But on the other, the dead zones can be seen as pockets of resistance, territories where the drive towards connectivity has yet to penetrate.

In the late 18th century the Wye Valley held particular significance for those in search of Picturesque beauty. At the time of the industrial revolution improvements to methods of production and the transportation of goods began to alter both the appearance of the landscape and the way in which the rural environment was regarded. Followers of the Picturesque travelled to the wilder regions of Britain in the hope of experiencing a return to nature in its rawer form. As an aesthetic effect, however, the Picturesque always required the viewer to remain at a distance and not to be absorbed into the object of desire. Outside the frame, the viewer could enjoy the 'picture' with a sense of being an empathetic, yet disconnected, observer.

Today the Wye Valley has lost much of its Picturesque charm: a sense of industry is commonplace; Tintern Abbey has been shorn of its ivy; and nature, by and large, is kept neatly in its place. And yet in one respect a sense of wilderness remains. Here and there dead zones in the cell phone network indicate that the imposition of order is incomplete. South of Tintern Abbey, between Wyndcliff Wood and Dennel Hill, the signal is unreliable. Towards Monmouth, in the region of Whitebrook, there is a sizable dead zone where no signal can be accessed. These images are a survey of the Wye Valley dead zones.

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Wye Valley 1 (2013, lightbox, 30cm x 75cm)