The White Columns Curated Artist Registry
is an online platform for emerging and under-recognized artists to share images and information about their respective practices. The Registry seeks to create a context for artists who have yet to benefit from wider critical, curatorial or commercial support. To be eligible, artists cannot be affiliated with a commercial gallery in New York City.
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STATEMENT OF WORK
Human activity is causing the mass extinction of plants and animals at an alarming rate. Ultimately all life is in danger. Miniature portraits of disappearing species inhabit my otherwise abstract paintings, focusing attention on this important topic. I juxtapose vivid hues, bold shapes, brushstrokes and stains to represent a turbulent environment that is becoming increasingly inhospitable.
The first paintings I did of this kind included well-known animal representatives of the current trend of mass extinction – such as a polar bear, and monarch butterfly. As my idea was sparked by reading Elizabeth Kolbert’s 2014 book The Sixth Extinction (where she asserts that we are now witnessing the largest mass extinction since the annihilation of the dinosaurs about sixty- six million years ago), I made a painting depicting a Panamanian golden frog, one of the animals whose stories she discusses at length. Other paintings focus on endangered local animals – those from the US, and especially those from California. I recently completed paintings that include a California condor, a northern spotted owl, and a Sierra Nevada yellow-legged frog. I am also interested in animals that are not endangered per se, but dwell in the wildland-urban interface, and have conflicting relationships with the people living around them – such as mountain lions, bears, and coyotes, among others.