The ecoartspace blog will feature artist profiles and reviews of exhibitions, as well as writings on ecological systems. We are interested in presenting work that artists are making in collaboration with scientists, and poetics including spoken word, opera, and performative work. Painting, sculpture, ceramics, photography, drawing, and printmaking are all welcome media. Speculative architecture and public art are also encourage. Submissions for posts can be sent to We look forward to hearing from you!

You can access the previous ecoartspace blog HERE (2008-2019)

ecoartspace, LLC

Mailing address: PO Box 5211 Santa Fe, New Mexico 87502
<< First  < Prev   1   2   3   4   5   ...   Next >  Last >> 
  • Monday, May 29, 2023 7:21 AM | ecoartspace (Administrator)


    May 29,2023

    This week we recognize  Tali Weinberg, Tali Weinberg and her art practice merging climate data with textiles.

    "While petrochemical pipelines run through the earth, petrochemical-derived medical tubes are pipelines that run through and around our bodies. As the detritus of our human life on land runs downstream and then circulates back through bodies, watersheds are one window into the interdependence of ecological and human health. In the “Drainage Studies,” 2021 (above) temperature data for each of the 18 major river basins in the continental US is materialized as hand-dyed, color-coded cotton and coiled along bundles of medical tubing that are entwined together."

     click images for more info

    "I translate climate data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration into abstracted landscapes and waterscapes, materializing the data with plant-derived fibers and dyes and petrochemical-derived medical tubing and fishing line. These woven datascapes and coiled sculptures merge a practice of record keeping with a practice of grieving, and merge an expression of scientific research with an expression of lived experience. This project started in 2015 as an investigation of the mechanisms through which we come to understand climate crises, from data and journalistic narrative to embodied and affective experience."

    Bodies on the Line, 2014 (above) draws text from conversations with women activists from the San Francisco Bay Area, Weinberg's home at the time. The quotes used were originally selected in response to an exhibition space in Patterson, New Jersey, a town built on the manufacturing of silk by a labor force of working-class women who put their bodies on the line at work, and in defense of better work. With silk thread on silk organza, the artist hand-stitched fragments of these conversation in order to intertwine the material and labor history of the place with the struggles of contemporary women. In 2016, Weinberg was invited to evolve the project for the Hangzhou Triennial of Fiber Art in Zhejiang Province, China—another city built on the production of silk.

    Water Bodies, 2019 (above) is a series of works that interpret annual average temperatures for oceans and lands, hemp-dyed with plant and insect-derived dyes, and petrochemical-derived fishing line. The strands of dyed hemp warp threads color-code 138 years of temperature for the earth’s surface. This materialization of rising temperatures is held together with petrochemical-derived fishing line to create woven patterns that mimic waves. While the fishing line’s reflective quality evokes the glimmering surface of a body of water, the combination of materials and data also suggests the link between climate crisis, extraction of petrochemicals, and the accumulation of toxic plastics in our bodies and ecosystems.

    Memories of Future Fires, 2022 (below) is a series that explores forest fires; smoke inhalation; microplastics in our ecosystems, blood, and lungs; and loss of homes past and future. These hand-woven pieces start with photographs which the artist took in a fire-decimated landscape in the Pacific Northwest. She then re-materializes the trees with petrochemical-derived monofilament. In woven form, the trees also reference hearts and lungs as she looks to the connections between life sustaining circulatory systems inside and outside the human body.

    Tali Weinberg  interweaves petrochemical and plant-derived materials, data, and landscape imagery to draw attention to the harms of ongoing petrochemical extraction, from rising temperatures and species loss to the buildup of toxic plastics in our bodies and ecosystems. Weinberg’s work is held in public and private collections and is exhibited internationally including at the Griffith Art Museum, 21C Museum, Berkeley Art Museum, University of Colorado Art Museum, Georgia Museum of Art, Center for Craft, and Form & Concept gallery. She has been featured in the New York Times, onEarth Magazine, Surface Design Journal, Fiber Art Now, and Ecotone. Honors include an Illinois Artist Fellowship, a Tulsa Artist Fellowship, Serenbe Fellowship, Windgate Fellowship to Vermont Studio Center, Lia Cook Jacquard Residency, SciArt Bridge Residency for cross-disciplinary collaboration, and a virtual residency at New York’s Museum of Art and Design, among others. She has taught at California College of the Arts and Penland School of Craft.

    Featured images (top to bottom): ©Tali Weinberg, Drainage Study: Clot, 2021, temperature data for 18 major rivers in the continental US, petrochemical-derived medical tubing, organic cotton dyed with plant and insect derived dyes and mineral mordants, 8 x 15 inches; Gilded Valley, 2015, from the “Field Studies” series: Agricultural landscapes woven from California-grown organic cotton dyed with plant dyes and mineral mordants, 18 x 25 inches; Bodies on the Line, 2016, installation for Hangzhou Triennial Of Fiber Art, Zhejiang Art Museum, Hangzhou, China, 10 panels, each 42 in width x 80 in height; Water Bodies (Ocean), 2019, 138 years of annual average temperature for 71 percent of the Earth’s surface (ocean), hemp dyed with plant- and insect-derived dyes, petrochemical-derived fishing line, 35 x 50 inches (photo by Philip Maisel); Lungs, 2022, from Memories of Future Fires series, 86 x 112 inches (photo by Rebecca Heidenberg); Self-portrait of the artist.

  • Monday, May 22, 2023 6:39 AM | ecoartspace (Administrator)


    May 22,2023

    This week we recognize  Barbara Boissevain Barbara Boissevain, and her work exploring the impacts of human activity on the environment.

    In a series of images titled “Ghost Hangar” (above) Boissevain explored how “As caretakers of our environment we are bound to the missteps of our predecessors. Hangar One is an iconic colossal structure that is also the largest Superfund site in Silicon Valley. Rife with controversy, it was recently found to be leaking toxic chemicals into the San Francisco Bay. These aerial shots depict the resulting biological die-off of the wetlands in close proximity to the hangar. The intent of this work is to cultivate awareness and provoke meaningful discourse about environmental stewardship.”    click images for more info

    “The trees will outlive us,” 2016 (above) explores  abandoned human structures as they decay and transform. Through the process of investigating these sites the artist looks for clues alluding to their pasts and imagined how they would be further altered by the passage of time. In post-production, she layers location specific elements highlighting the tension between the present beauty and the future evolution of these relinquished sites. This series began in 2016 when Boissevain began photographing a family farm located on Montauk Highway in Long Island, New York. The farm, homesteaded by her great-grandfather over a century ago, is no longer a working farm. The structures are being consumed by the forest that was there long before my family set foot on Long Island after arriving from Europe. This is an ongoing project and I will be continuing to seek-out and photograph locations undergoing this process of reclamation and transformation.”

    Continuing the series “Les Arbres Nous Survivront (The Trees Will Outlive Us),” 2018-2019 (above) during the summers of 2018 and 2019, as an artist-in-residence in France, Boissevain began photographing structures being consumed by forest and forgotten by their former inhabitants (above). These sites include a decommissioned coal factory, a Château in Normandy that was used as a headquarters for the Nazi’s during World War II and an abandoned abbey most recently used as a convalescent home.

    "Allégorie du Jardin,” 2022 (above) came about after Boissevain’s time spent living in France. The daily onslaught of disturbing news regarding our environment, combined with living in a place with so many layers of history all around her caused her to think very deeply about our species’ relationship to nature and how we have historically seen ourselves in relation to our environment. Looking for answers in the incredible gardens and parks in Paris where the history of man’s relationship with nature is visible around every corner. Spending hours In the giant historical archive, the library’s collections requested archival prints (hundreds of years old) of the very same parks and gardens she was photographing. She experimented with bringing together the past and present, by compositing archival prints with contemporary photographs of the same subject matter.

    One of Boissevain’s most recent projects is a book titled “Salt of the Earth” 2023 (below), focusing on the environment for more than twenty years and highlighting the changes that she witnessed firsthand taking place in our environment. Boissevain remains driven to show the power art has to educate. Her intention with the book is to remind people that positive change is possible. In February and March of this year a kickstarter campaign ran for the production of the book, which will be a 110-page hardcover photo book with over seventy of her color photographs documenting the restoration of the San Francisco Bay's salt ponds back to natural wetlands. In addition to the images, the book will also feature essays by Laura Noble, a London-based art critic and writer, and John Hart, an award-winning environmental journalist. "Salt of the Earth" will raise awareness about the incredible transformation taking place in the San Francisco Bay.

    Barbara Boissevain  is a visual artist and photographer whose work focuses on the impact of human activity on the environment. The theme of nature’s ability to regenerate and reclaim human altered landscapes is central to her work. Boissevain first studied painting at Parsons School of Design in New York, before immersing herself in photography, earning a B.F.A. from the San Francisco Art Institute and an M.F.A. from San Jose State University. She has exhibited her work widely, including international solo and group exhibitions in the USA and Europe. Her work has been published in a number of publications including Lenscratch and The American Scholar. In 2021 her work was featured on NPR’s “The Picture Show” (in conjunction with the U.N. Climate Change Summit in Glasgow, Scotland) as well as on the PBS News show “Something Beautiful” in 2022. Her art has been acquired by numerous public and private collections around the world, including the Google corporate collection. For seven years, she was an artist in residence with the City of Palo Alto’s Cubberley Artist Studio Program in Palo Alto, California. In 2018 she was awarded an artist-in-residence in France at Galerie Huit in Arles, France (in conjunction with the internationally renowned Les Rencontres de la Photographie Festival). In July of 2022 she was invited to Atelier 11 for a solo residency through L’AiR Arts international residency program in Paris,

    Featured images (top to bottom): ©Barbara Boissevain, Ghost Hangar series, images primarily shot in Silicon Valley; The trees will outlive us 2016, Long Island NY; Les Arbres Nous Survivront 2018-2019, France; Allégorie du Jardin  2022, France; Salt of the Earth 2023; Portrait of the artist.

  • Monday, May 15, 2023 7:58 AM | ecoartspace (Administrator)


    May 5,2023

    This week we recognize  Maru Garcia  Maru Garcia, and her laboratory and fieldwork practice exploring organic matter.

    Ground Dwellers, 2015 (above) is a group of bio-art in Petri dishes that incorporates a collection of microorganisms present in the soil where corn is cultivated. Corn is Mexico’s staple and single, most important nutrition source. The conservation of these micro-ecosystems assures future corn production, innovation in fertilizer creation and biological pest control. The collection of species was obtained by the researchers at CNRG (National Center of Genetic Resources). This is a government institution that is committed to obtaining, characterizing and preserving species important for Mexico’s biodiversity.”

    click images for more info

    Vivarium, 2018 (above) is a performance piece that “studies the interactions within an ecosystem, from the movement of matter and energy to the community created by the living and nonliving organisms. This network of interactions is captured in the macroscopic and microscopic level over time, as an attempt to scale what it means to be part of a larger ecosystem: the Earth. For Vivarium I, the artist shared a marine ecosystem in the coasts of California in a space of 6 hours, engaging with the environment and living organisms that surrounded her.”

    Playground, 2019 (above) “is a multimedia installation that looks in a critical point of view the situation of South East Los Angeles, where massive contamination of lead occurred due to irresponsible practices of a car battery recycling facility. Being lead a dangerous substance, particularly affecting the cognitive development of children, Playground offers the viewer the possibility to play with the soil in a protected environment. The playful interactivity of the piece is captured by a live projection, confronting the experience with the reality of people affected by this problem.”

    Speaking on the lead contamination in South East LA, Garcia created Vacuoles: Bioremediating Cultures, 2019 (above) an installation of 29 ceramic pieces that contained lead contaminated soil from south east LA. “This project resulted from research into an environmental and social crisis specific to South East LA, where thousands of families face severe lead contamination in land affected by a company recycling car batteries. As part of the research, soil samples were collected and encapsulated in oval shape ceramic pieces. This artwork responded to some plants’ bioremediating action in their vacuoles, where they absorb the lead and encapsulate it in these cellular organelles. The work is presented as an interactive installation, and the “vacuoles” represent the 29 most contaminated parks, schools, or childcare centers in South East LA. The viewers can walk around these vacuoles and think about themselves as “bioremediating organisms.” Their image is projected on the wall as they move around the space, resembling a Petri dish or a microscopic view. This is an invitation to exercise our possibility to act as remediators instead of exploiters.”

    Garcia's most recent and ongoing project is titled Prospering Backyards (below). It “is a project that uses the power of art, science, and community to address the severe case of lead contamination in the soil caused by Exide Technologies in areas of East Los Angeles, Boyle Heights, Vernon, Commerce, Maywood, Huntington Park, and Bell. This is a collaborative scientific research between community scientists from the affected community, artists, activists, and scientists, to develop an alternative method for reducing lead exposure in contaminated backyards while considering the health of the soil and the environment.”

    Maru Garcia            combines laboratory and fieldwork tools from her background in plant chemistry and the pharmaceutical industry. Her use of media includes research, installations, performance, sculpture, and video, usually with the presence of organic matter to help understand the biological processes occurring in complex systems. She has participated in conferences, solo and group exhibitions in North America, Europe, and Asia. Garcia was an artist in residence in the National Center of Genetic Resources in Mexico and has received awards from the New York Foundation for the Arts ‘Anonymous Was a Woman Environmental Art Grant’, the California Environmental Protection Agency (CalEPA) Environmental Justice Grant, the California Arts Council, Los Angeles Sustainability Collaborative, Clifton Webb Scholarship for the Arts, and Fundación Jumex. She collaborated with the Art-Sci Center and Counterforce Lab at UCLA and was a 2020- 2021 Sci-Art Ambassador for Supercollider. Garcia worked at the Getty Research Institute in the 2019-2020 Scholar program titled “Art and Ecology” and was a 2021-2022 artist in residence at 18th Street Arts Center. Currently, she's a Getty Foundation grant recipient for the exhibition “Sink: places we call home” with Self Help Graphics & Art, to be presented in the Pacific Standard Time Art x Science x LA in 2024. She is an Associate Research Scientist in Mineral Sciences at the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County and founder of Biomedia Studio and Prospering Backyards. Garcia holds an MFA in Design & Media Arts from UCLA as well as an MS in Biotechnology and a BS in Chemistry both from Tecnológico de Monterrey, México.

    Featured Images (top to bottom): ©Maru Garcia, Ground dwellers series 2015, images primarily shot in Mexico, photographer Tania Lara; Vivarium performance video  2018, California; Playground, 2019; Membrane tensions 2021, scoby and bacteria in glass container, Los Angeles Municipal Art Gallery; Prospering backgrounds ongoing, taking place in Boyle Heights, East Los Angeles, South East LA; Portrait of the artist.

  • Friday, May 12, 2023 6:04 PM | ecoartspace (Administrator)

    Over the last year, ecoartspace founder Patricia Watts worked closely with rivers artist Basia Irland to present her Repositories, portable sculptures created during her waterway journeys, as a monograph. Irland's objects reveal rich stories of rivers through her collections of water data, watershed maps, artworks, plants, and seeds. The artist invites you to take this book with you to the river!

    Repositories was printed in March 2023 and made available in our store mid-April. It consists of 152 pages, 80 color images, and 11 unique site maps. This is an ecoartspace publication, the first in a compilation of monographs on single series by ecological artists. An edition of 300, the book is hardbound with case binding, smyth sewn signatures and FSC paper. It was design by Graeme Walker in the UK. Preface & main text are by Patricia Watts and the foreword by Sandra Postel, Director of the Global Water Policy Project & 2021 Stockholm Water Prize Laureate.

    REPOSITORIES takes us on a series of ecoconscious journeys with an artist who has been intimate with many waterways, and the people, flora and fauna living along them. For over twenty years, Basia Irland has been working with scientists, students, activists and Tribal members along waterways across the US and Canada. With her ongoing art practice to create a deep and meaningful engagement with living bodies of water, the construction of Repositories emerged as a methodology for archiving documentation of research and physical engagements during Irland's riparian journeys.

    Irland has journeyed throughout international watersheds and along entire lengths of rivers during her epic durational Gathering of Waters projects. She is an artist, Fulbright Scholar, author, and activist who creates global community-based water projects featured in her books, “Water Library” (UNM Press, 2007) and “Reading the River, The Ecological Activist Art of Basia Irland” (Museum De Domijnen, The Netherlands, 2017). Irland is Professor Emerita, Department of Art, UNM, where she founded the Art & Ecology Program. She has written for National Geographic; had a large retrospective in the Netherlands; been invited to represent the United States in the Bienal de Cuenca, Ecuador; and has been featured in over 70 international publications.

    Purchase your copy here

  • Monday, May 01, 2023 10:32 AM | ecoartspace (Administrator)


    May 1,2023

    This week we recognize  Jaanika Peerna, and her drawing, installation, and performance practice for over twenty years.

    "I create drawings, installations and situations. My elements are line and water; my materials pencils, vellum and time. I am a vessel gathering subtle and rapturous processes in nature, using experiences and impulses to make my work. I capture ice turning into water. I let gravity of the melting ice dissolve drawn lines. I swim through thousands of layers of gray air and mark each one down. Some of my work is born in the solitude of my studio. But often participatory performances, such as my "Glacier Elegies" project, draw me out from the safe silence of my studio and expand my practice with sound, movement, and chance. With these public performances I make a space for people to co-create and then witness collectively the loss of what has just been created—not unlike humankind who is currently witnessing the loss of vast amounts of glacial ice. The question I ask to the audience often is: What would you do if you were handed the last piece of natural ice on Earth?”

    click images for more info

    "Whether in her large-scale gesture drawings on Mylar that become expansive installations, her smaller sculptural pieces that become receptacles for delicate inscriptions of light, or her videos and performances, at the core of Peerna’s work is a concern for the embodied, sensorially engaged subject in dynamic relation to the spatial and material world. By drawing attention to the evanescent experiential qualities of light, shadow, and movement, Peerna’s work operates with the subtle force of a slowly rising tide – first by awakening the senses, and then, gradually, by delivering insights only a mind deeply in touch with its body is prepared to receive." Taney Roniger, catalog essay, Kentler International Drawing Space, Brooklyn, NY, January 2015

    Peerna’s work has always been fueled by the forces of nature but since 2017 the artist has taken on more specific approach to address the climate breakdown we are all surrounded with. Ever since she was a little girl dreaming of becoming an Olympic figure skater, ice has been close and dear to her: its toughness, transparency, beauty as well as fragility. As we are witnessing a massive and furious melting speed of glaciers in polar regions these past decades Peerna has been looking for ways to face the facts, heal the soul as well as act an an artist in order to help slow the destruction down.

    Her Glacier Elegy projects (above) consist of exhibition-size installations and live drawing performances where at first a large drawing is made with audience participation and then melted with blocks of ice. The audience is included in a collective experience of creating something only to be literally melted away by the end of the performance. The project has had a strong impact on the participants in diverse communities and locations where Peerna has performed.

    Much of Jaanika Peerna's recent work is a lament to glaciers and natural ice. Her ongoing project Glacier Elegy forms the central core of her monograph (below). The book presents an in-depth look at this iconic work, through essays, images of works and performances, and the artist's own words. In doing so, it shows how a contemporary artist in her prime addresses the climate emergency. The book touches on ecological grief and looks at how Peerna and other key contemporary artists have used the subject of ice to highlight the global climate emergency.

    Jaanika Peerna is an Estonian-born artist and educator living and working in New York since 1998. Her work encompasses drawing, installation, and performance, often dealing with the theme of transitions in light, air, water and other natural phenomena. For her performances she often involves the audience in participatory reflection on the current climate meltdown. Her art practice stems from the corporeal experience of our existence and reaches towards enhanced awareness of the fragility, interconnectedness and wonder of all life. She has exhibited her work and performed extensively in the entire New York metropolitan area as well as in Berlin, Paris, Tallinn, Barcelona, Venice, Moscow, Dubai, Sydney, Canberra, Montreal, and Cologne. Her work is in numerous private collections in the USA and Europe and is part of the Fonds National d’Art Contemporain, Paris. Her performance Glacier Elegy was recently acquired by the Glyn Vivian Museum in the UK. Her work is represented by JHB Gallery and ARC Fine Art in the US, HAUS Galerii in Estonia and IdeelART globally. She was awarded the FID Grand Prize in 2016 for her work in drawing, and she was a teaching artist at the Dia Art Foundation for many years. Her new monograph Glacier Elegies was published in 2021 by Terra Nova Press and distributed by MIT Press.

    Featured Images (top to bottom): ©Jaanika Peerna, Sizzlecolor, 2005, digital print, 24 x 24 inches; Light Matter, 2015, solo exhibition at Kentler International Drawing Space, New York, photo by Etienne Rossard; ReRouted Flight, 2020, audience activiated wall installation with instructions, about 6 x 10 fee, at Tallinn Art Hall, Estonia; Glacier Elegy Brooklyn, performance with a block of ice in a public park, October 2020; Glacier Elegies monograph published 2021; portrait of the artist.

  • Monday, May 01, 2023 10:31 AM | ecoartspace (Administrator)

    Mia Mulvey, Old Tjikko, 2018, cyanotype on wall and Pando II, 2018, ceramics on pedestal

    Slow Steady Movement Towards Change:
    Art in a Wild, Isolated Space

    Interview with Stefan Hagen from the Montello Foundation and Kate James from Concord Art Association on the recent “This Earth” exhibition including members Mia Mulvey, Elisabeth Condon, Laurie Lambrecht, and Margaret Cogswell.

    Olivia Ann Carye Hallstein

    On view through May 7, 2023, is an exhibition that surveys artists who have visited the Montello Residency in rural Nevada. This wild and stunning desert landscape allows a unique space for contemplation and reflection. Artists choose to create work on site or use the impressions from their stay to create work in their studios. It is a windowed small cabin on a lonely road in the middle of a vast landscape. I speak with Stefan Hagen and Kate James about their intentions and perspectives on the work being shown, the intentions of the residency and the philosophical basis behind their motivations.

    Elisabeth Condon, Urban Jungle, 2016

    The Montello residency invites artists from all over the world to witness and reflect on the desert wilderness. What is unique to you about the “artist as a witness” when experiencing these spaces rather than a more quantitatively analytical perspective?

    SH: A desert landscape is ideal for observing the fragility of nature. Though it seems that every living entity is adapted to a very harsh environment, but it is also obvious that there is a very precise balance necessary for living things to thriver here. Any footstep will stay visible for at least a month. The extremely slow rate that higher forms of plants grow make it clear that our presence has an irreversible effect, globally and locally.  For the residents it is a unique opportunity to spend uninterrupted time in an unusual landscape that becomes familiar to them over the duration of the retreat. It becomes so familiar that they can revisit specific places and experience the interconnectedness of nature. This can be a catalyst for a new direction or influence an existing body of work. The resulting works of art have the ability and the power to influence the audience in a way no quantitative approach can. Since our decisions are largely based on irrational and spontaneous impulses, the work becomes especially influential. The numbers are certainly there to back this up.

    Laurie Lambrecht, Desert Driftwood, 2018

    Laurie Lambrecht, High Desert Tapestry, 2018

    The evidence is clear in a recent show at the Concord Art Association of many of these artists titled “This Earth.” It shows an incredible range of disciplines and topics related to the environment. From photographs to color palettes, to smells, to sculptures with water, and performative works, it is a true survey of perspectives. What have been some of the challenges and surprises you have come across while trying to honor each artist in such a diverse group?

    KJ: Yes, this show reflects the diversity of artists who have experienced the residency and offers variable entry points to consider our own relationship to the environment, but the themes remain the same throughout and the variety of experiences. These lead to more chances to connect with the viewer. Some of the work was created at the site and some was inspired while contemplating the desert environment and created post residency. An example of a post-residency production is the video where two artists dress as mussels and sing a pleading song to please protect them. Even a puppet show inspired by a rat living under the Montello cabin speaks to the fragility of life. A theme kept in a conceptual sculptural installation about the water crisis using water from Walden Pond. We literally breathe in Thoreau's conservation ideas by means of water vapor.  

    Fragility, balance, survival, co-dependence, coupled with awe, wonder and inspiration and the implied or inferred urgency to respect nature all coalesce in the show. The fragility of life in the desert is a paradigm for the fragility of life on earth.  The desert setting for this residency makes the artist hyper aware of what threatens our existence.  It's poignant that the universal question from viewers who have visited the show has been, "would I be able to be alone and unplugged in the desert."  This show subtly honors questions about survival.

    Margaret Cogswell, Desert Mounds, 2022, lithograph ink bar rubbing of the desert floor, watercolor, colored pencil and collage on Chinese paper, 15 x 44 inches

    The theme of the fragility of life has come up in a lot of my recent conversations. Even in my last interview was rewilding and the artist as passive observer rather than interventionist in the environment. In your experience in such a delicate wild space, what is a constructive human interaction with the environment that fosters mutual growth and awareness?

    SH: It is always a paradox that a scientist or artist or any observer must travel to these wild spaces and set up a camp, intrude in order to reflect on them. But there is a way to tread lightly and minimize the impact. And of course, artists have the tools to tell the stories of these lands for the rest of us, so we don’t have to all travel to these fragile places.

    Margaret Cogswell, Tales from the Desert Floor, 2022, lithograph ink bar rubbing of the desert floor, watercolor, colored pencil on Chinese paper, 15 x 44 inches

    Absolutely! And, this is in keeping with some foundational philosophies. In fact, Concord Art Association is based in the founding location of “Transcendentalism”, a nature-oriented Christian philosophy that has been hugely influential in New England. This isolated residency is literally on “Thoreau” Avenue. Bridging across the continental USA, what is it that makes this exhibition relevant to the New England mentality and the contemporary Zeitgeist?

    KJ: Thoreau’s experiment in solitude, simplicity and living deliberately at Walden Pond parallels the Montello residency. In fact, the placement of This Earth down the street from Thoreau’s cabin is very intentional. Thoreau and the transcendentalist movement marked a giant change 200 years ago in how we saw ourselves in relation to nature, a shift in thinking that God is not a separate entity but part of Man and a part of uppercase N, Nature.  Thoreau also opposed industrialization as he purported it was destroying the environment.  He inspired the conservation movement, and, I might add, "the awareness and simplify movements."

    The Montello Residency was modeled after Thoreau's experience at Walden. Both Walden and Montello outfitted environments with secluded simple cabins for the observation and reflection of nature without distraction and both reflect the paradigm shifts of their times. Like Thoreau's opposition to industrial growth, current environmental movements in response to the climate crisis are fueling our collective understanding. I believe a philosophical shift like the one created in the 19th century is the key to shifting our fraught relationship with the environment today and who better to activate that shift than artists. A newfound reverence for nature and simple lifestyles and electric cars and plastic bans are some of the tiny signs of change in how we collectively think about the environment. The art of Thoreau like the art created at Montello supports this slow steady movement towards change.

    Thank you both so much for speaking with me! This is such an incredible opportunity and an increasingly necessary space for an intimate interaction with the landscape. 

  • Monday, May 01, 2023 10:03 AM | ecoartspace (Administrator)

    The ecoartspace May 2023 e-Newsletter for subscribers is  here

  • Monday, April 24, 2023 8:08 AM | ecoartspace (Administrator)


    April 24, 2023

    This week we recognize  Buster Simpson, and his prolific fifty plus year career as a public artist, performing art as pharmaceutical.

    Hudson Headwaters Purge, 1991 (color) and Purge Projectile, 1983 (black & white) comprise The Purge Diptych (above), two action performances with common allegories of mender and meddler. Purge Projectile was staged on a construction site in lower Manhattan with the World Trade Center as backdrop. Here, the naked provocateur confronts the citadel of corporate consumption by slinging limestone, with its purging qualities, intending "agitation as antidote." For Hudson Headwaters Purge, numerous 24" diameter by 3" thick limestone disks were submerged at the headwaters of the Hudson River, just downstream from a barren Superfund site. For each, limestone serves as mender by purging acid from bodies of water and as agit prop to meddle with irresponsible consumption, the source of CO2 that results in human-induced climate change. The work has also been called "River Rolaids" or "Tums for Mother Nature by the media;" and to the artist as "Therapist." Pharmaceutically, limestone neutralizes or "sweetens" the pH of acidic waters. The process of adding limestone to acidic rivers is a mitigation practice often deployed by environmental agencies.

    click images for more info/credits

    Host Analog, 1991 (above) is comprised of eight segments of a Douglas fir tree that lived for 600 years in the wilderness to the west of Wy'east Mountain, now also known as Mount Hood. The tree, felled and bucked, was deemed unsuitable for lumber sometime in the 1960s and was left to decay in the forest. In 1990, it was rediscovered in the Bull Run Watershed (Portland's water source since 1895). Host Analog continues its relationship with the Bull Run as it is misted daily with water brought to the City from its original home. It is an urban nurse log, serving to exemplify a living laboratory of diversity, adaptability and resilience. When the segmented tree was transported to the plaza of the Oregon Convention Center, it was an active nurse log, carrying with it a native ecosystem. Over time, the forest landscape growing on Host Analog has been diversified with urban plants self-seeding and taking root, enabling a unique laboratory and creating an aesthetic that confronts the notion of what is "natural" with the elements of chance and change. This dynamic artwork will never be considered complete, as it will continually evolve.

    Beckoning Cistern, 2003 (above) is an aluminum cistern that collects roof watershed from the 81 Vine Street building in Seattle, Washington. Water is directed from the roof via downspout then through the extended index finger of an outstretched hand and into the 10 x 6 feet diameter tank "cuff" before eventually making its way down Vine Street to the Cistern Steps. The gesture of the outreaching finger suggests that of the Creation of Adam by Michelangelo from the Sistine Chapel in Rome.

    The Brightwater Art Master Plan for the Brightwater Treatment System, 2003 (below) proposed a philosophical approach, criteria, guiding principles and art opportunities for the wastewater treatment plant and conveyance corridor in King County, Washington and was intended to provide guidance to future artists involved in the project and to inform the general public about the context for art in the system. This is an early example of an artist taking an active role in developing innovative opportunities for ecological artists to do public art projects.

    Simpson's most recent public art project Anthropocene Migration Stage, completed in 2022 (below) is in response to the Habitat Beach, built in conjunction with the new Elliott Bay Seawall. Simpson strategically situated two sets of immediately useful as well as forward thinking sculptural placements along the Seattle Waterfront promenade, Anthropomorphic Triapods and SeaBarrier to both furnish a public amenity and a staging area of accessible materials to migrate inland as needed, mitigating future rising sea encroachment. Anthropomorphic Triapods act immediately as seating and interactive play objects, and stand ready to be engaged as shoreline habitat anchors and wave attenuators. This promenade location was once a principle boat landing site for the Duwamish Tribe. SeaBarrier is made up of multiples of six-foot long precast concrete wall segments, with a faux sand bag motif, that utilize a flexible interlocking modular system typical of a Jersey barrier. All port cities are on the edge of rising tides, Simpson has inscribed the names of some of them along the bottom of SeaBarrier in a gesture of commonality.

    Buster Simpson has been active as an artist since the late 1960s, working on major infrastructure and planning projects, site specific sculptures, museum installations, and community interventions. Simpson received a MFA in 1969, and later, the Distinguished Alumni Award in Architecture and Design, University of Michigan. He's a recipient of numerous awards, among them, NEA fellowships and the Americans for the Arts Public Art Award in 2009. His work engages social actions and sustainable opportunities often considered "poetic utility." Humor and rich metaphors distinguish his work, with deceptively simple sculptures. In 2013, the Frye Art Museum mounted a major retrospective of Simpson's work. In May of 2015 and 2016, Simpson conducted Rising Waters Confab at the Robert Rauschenberg Foundation on Captiva Island, Florida, which brought together a collaborative team of scientists, artists, land use specialists, and activists to create approaches to resilience and the graceful migration of people and biota. Simpson has exhibited at The New Museum, MoMA PS1, Seattle Art Museum, Frye Art Museum, The Hirshhorn Museum, Capp Street Project, and Museum of Glass. His work is included in numerous public commissions throughout North America.

    Featured Images (top to bottom): ©Buster Simpson, The Purge Diptych, Hudson Headwaters Purge, 1991, and Purge Projectile, 1983, both in New York; HOST ANALOG, 1991, Oregon Convention Center, Portland, Oregon, stainless steel irrigation, basalt, old growth (windfall) logs, city water, porcelain enamel signage, 17' x 90' x 30'; Beckoning Cistern, 2003, Growing Vine Street, Seattle, Washington, painted aluminum, stainless steel, 34' x 6' diameter (including downspout); Brightwater Art Master Plan for the Brightwater Treatment System, 2003, King County, Seattle; Anthropocene Migration Stage, 2022, Elliott Bay Seawall, Seattle, Washington; portraits of the artist as Woodman, 1974.

  • Monday, April 10, 2023 11:16 AM | ecoartspace (Administrator)


    April 10,2023

    This week we recognize  Nathalia Favaro Nathalia Favaro, and her twenty year arts practice based in      São Paulo, Brazil.

    "This work [Intervalo, above] was developed during the Labverde Artistic Residency in the Amazon Rainforest in Manaus, Brazil, in 2018. In an attempt to experience a space in constant action and transformation, almost unidentifiable as the Amazon Rainforest, the work suggests, from the variation and intensity of light, the discovery of a place that we do not fully understand. In the Amazon Forest, as it is a closed forest, we hardly see the light coming in and consequently we do not perceive the nuances of shadows. The work is a video record of walking through the Adolfo Ducke Reserve, with a blank sheet of paper in my hands, trying to reveal the space in between things, a space that is light and shadow and only exists in this context, over a period of time."

    click images for more info

    "Nathalia Favaro experiences some forms of the world through the gesture of creation, elaborating, through ceramics, an architecture of existing things articulated in space. It allows the reality of the object to manifest itself from another point of view, at the same time apprehending it from within. Her works highlight the look at what can often be imperceptible or unimportant, such as the dry branches of a tree." above

    From satellite images of Google Earth digital platform, the proposal of this work, The Edge Effect, 2019 (above) is to cover 900 km of the BR - 319 highway, which connects Manaus to Porto Velho, in the Amazon Rainforest. Based on drawings generated in the territory due to the removal of the trees, the work looks for the remaining cuts in these spaces: the voids, the remains of parts, the parts of a whole, the fragments. In the context of the forest, “forest fragments” are areas of closed forest that remain intact in the middle of a plantation, a pasture or a deforested area. The trees at the ends of these fragments are exposed to weather, parasites and other biological and chemical factors, becoming less healthy and slowly dying. This process is called the "edge effect."

    "The "Daily Life" series includes a series of works that I have done over the years. In each of them I try to record the duration of an experience in a certain period of time and space. The chosen materials refer directly to the daily use of the same and many times the work arises from it. With this series I record my walk through materialities." above

    Nathalia Favaro (1981) is a brazilian artist currently based in Berlin, Germany. She graduated in Architecture and Urbanism from Mackenzie University, São Paulo and from Buenos Aires University, in Argentina. Her work moves between sculpture, drawing and video with themes related to the territory, the use and the transformation of the land. Among her exhibitions, the individual O Gesto e o Vazio (São Paulo, 2019) and the collectives: 16 VERBO (Galeria Vermelho, 2022), Abre Alas #16 (A Gentil Carioca, Rio de Janeiro, 2020)and La naturaleza de las cosas - Humboldt idas y venidas (Art Museum of the National University of Colombia, Bogotá, 2019). In 2017, she was an artist in residency at EKWC - European Ceramic Workcentre, in the Netherlands and in 2018 at Gaya Ceramics in Bali, Indonesia and Labverde, Brazil. At the moment she is in an artistic residency at B.L.O. Ateliers, in Berlin, Germany.

    Featured Images (top to bottom): ©Nathalia Favaro, Intervalo, 2019, video (4:00 mins), included in Embodied Forest, 2021 online + book, ecoartspace; Untitled, 2017, porcelain and bronze glaze / porcelain and bronze glaze 100 pieces / 100 pieces for the exhibition O Gesto e o Vazio, curated by Elias Muradi, Ely Lutaka, Eduardo Ferrer e Luciana Nemes at Fundação Mokiti Okada, São Paulo, 2019; Edge Effects, 2019 45 ceramic pieces, iron cable and steel cable / 45 ceramic pieces, iron cable and bar 160 x 40 x 10cm, exhibition Massapê Projetos, 2021, curated by Julia Lima; Daily Series #4 Bali, 2018 ceramics/ceramics 31 pieces of 40 x 20cm each; The Horizon Is Within Us, 2019, Finland; portrait of the artist taken by Aline Vilhena Roca.

  • Friday, March 31, 2023 7:37 PM | ecoartspace (Administrator)

    The ecoartspace April 2023 e-Newsletter for subscribers is here

<< First  < Prev   1   2   3   4   5   ...   Next >  Last >> 
Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software