My work is rooted in ecopsychology; both mourning one’s environmental losses and the manic overconsumption which prevents one from handling those losses. Using natural relics suspended in clear plastic, these works convey both the short life-span of living things as well as man’s long-lasting Earthly exploits.
However, to focus solely on the loss and the madness leaves one with little energy. Therefore, the callousing effect of Culture can (and should) be tempered by time spent in Nature.
There is a unique experience that comes from dropping oneself directly into wilderness. The result is an opening of the mind, the dissolving of boundaries between body and environment, and the expansion of the heart. For seven months, I returned to the same Colorado ponderosa pine forest that surrounded me as a child. Absorbed in the peacefulness of those woods, I watched the familiar species again navigate the waxing and waning temperatures, weather patterns, food availability and migratory paths.
These works are an expression of gratitude for the struggles and successes of small beings -- not just in this forest, but in every forest, garden, ocean, river and desert. Though they delight us, they do not delight for us. Their quest for sustenance, companionship, shelter and community is no less important or tangible than our own. In fact, it often eclipses ours with its simplicity and elegant humility. To my adult eyes and my child’s heart, their brief and gorgeous lives are still heroic, loving, exalting and perfect.