Exhibition: April 30th to May 21st, 2010
Opening Reception: April 30th, 7-10pm
At the UAS Mainspace - 4th fl, 319 10th Ave SW
What is it that we value most in life, is it really what we value, or is it what we are conditioned to value?
In 2004 Ted Mosquin and Stan Rowe published "A Manifesto for Earth". It states that "ecocentrism is not an argument that all organisms have equivalent value. It is neither an anti-human argument nor a put-down of those seeking social justice. It does not deny that a myriad of important anthropocentric pro...blems exist. But it stands aside from these smaller, short-term issues in order to consider ecological reality. Reflecting on the ecological status of all organisms, it comprehends the ecosphere as a being that transcends in importance any one single species, even the self-named sapient one"
Over the last century or so, we in the western world have witnessed a shift in values, which may have been accelerated as a result of the 19th century American colonialist paradigms, such as "Manifest Destiny". The focus of our material culture shifted from the more ecocentric ways of indigenous peoples to the more Anthropocentric approaches of the modern military industrial complex. In addition to this (and perhaps in symbiosis with) our population has become increasingly apathetic and complicit. Marginalized (among other things) are the importance of human rights of the majority of the people on earth, and the health of our planet. There is the attitude that if it is out of sight, it is out of mind.
Interestingly, it is my experience that people in more developed countries tend to be more pre-disposed to accept propaganda (even with knowledge of its methods), whereas less-developed cultures tend to be pre-disposed to resist propagandist methods of societal direction. In my view, which is that of an artist and global resident, there is a need to promote compassion and ecocentic understanding in western social systems.
The content of my painting is about representing a sample of the flowing, unified world of ecocentric relations. The series in the gallery is a result of experimentation with the lines and forms found in nature, be it ripples in water, leaves and branches. Processes and effects perceived are the central content, not the iconography of traditional representations of nature although some works are more literally representative than others. Paint application walks the line between what I would consider an anthropocentric approach (paint applied via a brush or hand) and a more handless ecocentric approach (allowing paint to drip, morph, and dry, and the subsequent activity based on that outcome) so that evolution and spontaneous response to random possibilities are visible in the final holistic structure..