Monday, July 8, 2013

Extinction & Destruction

Here is the latest batch of paintings in-progress.  I want to address extinction and destruction.  What I'm captivated by is how breathtaking I find the reference imagery at a completely superficial level but how disturbing I find their historical existences.

Bingham Canyon Mine
Utah's Bingham Canyon Mine, also known as Kennecott Copper Mine, is the largest man made excavation in the world.  The.  World.  It is over .6 miles deep and 2.5 miles wide, covering 1,900 acres.  It's been in production since 1906.  Hmmm...that's 107 years carnage to the ole earth's skin.

The shear magnitude of  destruction is heart-stopping, but from a bird's eye view the image of the mine is beautiful.  What an interesting conflict of emotions.

(My buddy Megs took this photo and was kind enough to let me use it for reference.  Thanks Megs!)

Passenger Pigeon
When I took this photo almost a year ago I never would have realized it's immense contribution in the inspiration department.  I mean, it was a big deal when I was living it - I was holding a dang passenger pigeon after all - but looking back on it I now realize how special that moment really was.

I became aware of environment in a big way on this trip.  The specimen itself is beyond amazing but I became fascinated with the space in which it exists as well.

Dinosaur Valley State Park
I visited Dinosaur Valley State Park circa April 2013 and walked away with two main points:  Consumerism and Extinction.  That's what the above image represents to me.  But like the Bingham Canyon photo, this image also raises battling feelings.

My gut reaction when I saw the basket of plastic dinosaurs was childish glee.  The bright colors shaped like near-unbelievable-creatures are just small enough for a kid's hand and resemble candy. 

But then I switch to grownup mode knowing that this one small delicious basket isn't the only one in existence.  In fact, I'm sure truckload after truckload of these same dinosaur toys ramble down the road filling every science museum gift shop from Seattle to Savannah.  

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