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In the minds’ eye

Watching as a radiology consultant reports his findings from CT scans of patients’ heads, scrolling through the cross sectional images of the brain at such speed that for me it was like a flip book: I could see nothing but the motion. For him, the motion was irrelevant, just a means of getting to the detail within, reconstructing the 3D brain in his mind from the 2D cross sections displayed on the screen. Suddenly he stops, flicks back and forward between just two images, focussing in on the abnormality that is revealed. We had been talking about meditation earlier, and there seemed a link between this and his reporting technique: the meditative practice of letting the chatter of the mind run on, aware of its constant flow, but not allowing yourself become entangled in it. To me these medical images are so detailed, so in your face, that it is hard to contest them; but it is these images that I want to reimagine out in the environment. What would a CT scan look like on Dartmoor?

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