The prompt of this project was to represent an event through a place setting at a table. I chose the occupation of the Hambach forest - an event in which activists built and lived in treehouses to defend the last few acres of forest from the Hambach lignite coal mining operation ongoing in Northern Germany.
In my research, I unexpectedly came to find that Lignite coal is one of the most toxic pollutants - with debris in the air, and toxins in the material itself. It is considered one of dirtiest forms of coal. Yet, it is used to make fertilizer for food. So the paper plates are made with articles talking about the health dangers of lignite (with the irony that we grow our food in it), and the plate is lifted like a treehouse - also symbolizing our reliance on forests.
The Conquering of the Congress - I couldn't believe it when I learned that a group of orangutans is called a "congress." It's just so interesting given the political time.
This work is an exploration of systems, human systems, that are affecting orangutan populations. Completed in the summer of 2019. Featured in the Art4Apes show in December of 2019.
A series from the summer. Black Lives Matter.
This nike box is about an ocean liner that lost 62,000 nike shoes in 1990. 21 containers were lost, only 5 of which broke open. I was thinking about my privilege, being on a ship, and how it's time for us all to start jumping into the water, into uncomfortable discussions about racial issues in America, with the hope that we will wash up anew.
Ocean currents and "current" times ... the nike shoes actually proved to help scientists out, furthering ocean current research.
I also worked on a farm for my aunt's mother. I was really nervous about it - I typically do portraits/things people's eyes can connect to - so I really wanted to achieve some kind of warm feeling/connection with a few buildings and a windmill.
This semester I had the opportunity to take an open studio course called "Sophomore Studio" where I was able to plan my own project. In 3 ideations, I worked on products and their traceable impact to a specific environment, and question how the buyer purchasing a product is paying to impact and/or contribute to the decline of a specific species who's habitat is touched at some point along the supply chain. I think if the radical transparency was there (sometimes it is!), fewer people would buy products knowing it impacted an animal they really cared about.
1. Woodland Caribou and Scott Toilet Paper
2. Coca Cola's expansion into South America, Climate Change issues, and the use of Polar Bear in branding.
3. Tiger Balm, exploitation and violent history of Camphor production for a product meant to alleviate pain.
Bounding Hope is a 55" x 18" paper collage piece that connects the intersectionality of issues around human conflict and the environment, also addressing themes around family relationships and the role of youth.
The Caracal is a big cat with a habitat ranging from the Middle East to North Africa, known for its ability to survive brutal and extreme environments. (Just like the people that live here through the tension, stress, and fear of what each day could bring.) The Caracal in this collage is a kitten, it is bounding out of the desolation that lies behind it. The state of the environment after a war is not often talked about- and in this case, the young Caracal is a survivor, and a sign that the environment is still alive after a human conflict.
In the upper left there are scenes of violence, and to the right and below there are images of women and their actions in the face of conflict. Here the caracal is symbolic of a child- children are the hope of this region, and they are supported by Mothers; Mothers who are raising the hope for the future.
Featured in the GSP Journal here.
This was my first series of collages that talks about human intersections with the environment. In a way, photography constructs a perspective, and also seeks to facilitate connection - these collages push this further, using constructed imagery to "construct" what lives in this documented world - pushing themes of intersection/connection/disconnection and extraction.