Tree Talk: Artists Speak For Trees
Thursday, December 16
United States: 12pm PT, 1pm MT, 2pm CT, 3pm ET
EUROPE: 20:00 GMT Australia: 7am AEDT, Friday
Laziza Rakhimova, Johnny Plastini, Kellie Bornhoft, Skooby Laposky
The entanglements of a forest are vast, complex and mysterious. Today artists seek to understand and express the interconnectedness of trees with all living beings. Members included in the online exhibition and book Embodied Forest will share their diverse artworks and ideas about our human relationship with trees and forests.
For our December 2021 Tree Talk, Laziza Rakhimova will speak about her infrared photographs of Prospect Park and Central Park, which capture invisible light to create an ephemeral and fugitive beauty. Johnny Plastini will discuss his current research project, which examines forest ecosystems and specifically lichen cultures from a holistic perspective. Kellie Bornhoft will present Burnishings, her series of drawings made with charcoal remnants from wildfires. Skooby Laposky will share Hidden Life Radio, a public art project that aims to increase awareness of trees in Cambridge, Massachusetts and the city’s disappearing canopy.
Tree Talk is moderated by Sant Khalsa, ecofeminist artist and activist, whose work has focused on critical environmental and societal issues including forests and watersheds for four decades.
Co-sponsored by Joshua Tree Center for Photographic Arts
Members and one guest are free. General Public can attend for $10. Capacity is 100 participants. All participants MUST REGISTER.
Images: Laziza Rakhimova, Red Ochre, 2020; Johnny Plastini, Licheni Incantanti di Villa Borghese [Volume 2], 2021; Kellie Bornhoft, Burnishings, 2018-2020; Scooby Laposky, Hidden Life Radio, 2021
Laziza Rakhimova's infrared photographic C-prints of Prospect Park and Central Park are created in the aesthetics of Japanese paintings. These graphic, poeticized and abstracted into nature motif images elicit seasonal change and have a contemporary underlying theme of climate distress. They are sharp and bold, with green, blue, red, and yellow mimicking the heat and the gold leaf. Soon-to-drop leaves, detailed tree trunks, and distinct empty branches render a stylized feel. Rakhimova is a New York-based visual artist born in Tashkent (Uzbekistan). She graduated from UPEC in Paris where she majored in sustainable development. Rakhimova completed her photography education at Dawson College, Montreal majoring in photography and at ICP, New York. Rakhimova’s artistic approach alters the reality of nature and addresses environmental tragedies. She has recently worked on projects dealing with water contamination, NY harbor's resiliency, climate and biodiversity through interaction with nature. seeingthroughnewyork.art
Image: Laziza Rakhimova, Red Ochre, Infrared C-print, 2020
Johnny Plastini's current research project examines forest ecosystems and specifically lichen cultures from a holistic perspective. Each image narrates lichen symbionts through the lens of both scientific and anthropological definitions of culture: (1) a collection of cells in a suitable condition for growth, (2) the customs and social institutions of a particular people or social group. Plastini is especially interested in the tension between new human-derived architectures and the evolved architectures of old forest growth. Plastini received his BA in interdisciplinary studio art from the University of California, Santa Cruz and his MFA in printmaking from the Tyler School of Art and Architecture, Temple University. He has completed residencies at the Haystack Mountain School of Crafts in Maine, the Vermont Studio Center in Vermont, and MUDHOUSE in Crete, Greece. He is currently an Associate Professor in the Department of Art and Art History at Colorado State University. johnnyplastini.carbonmade.com
Image: Johnny Plastini, Licheni Incantanti di Villa Borghese [Volume 2], 2021, RISOgraph on Fabriano Tiziano, 12 x 16 inches
Kellie Bornhoft's Burnishings is a series of drawings made with charcoal remnants from wildfires. The work seeks intimacy through touch with the hopes of learning about and caring for native species. As Bornhoft travels to any public land, she identifies trees and rubs the found charcoal across paper placed on the tree’s bark. As the drawings are made dust and bits of charcoal drop to the base of the tree. Bornhoft’s practice seeks tangible and poetic narratives needed in an ever-warming climate. Bornhoft is currently working in the Bay Area of California and lecturing at Stanford University. Her work has been exhibited internationally in museums, galleries and film festivals such as the Contemporary Art Museum in Raleigh, North Carolina, Kulturanker in Magdeburg, Germany, and the Athens International Film and Video Festival. Bornhoft’s work has been reviewed and featured in many publications including Frieze Magazine. kelliebornhoft.com
Image: Kellie Bornhoft, Burnishings, 2018-2020, charcoal on paper, 126 11 x 14 inch drawings, dimensions variable (about 20’ x 9’)
Skooby Laposky's Hidden Life Radio is a public art project that aims to increase the general awareness of trees in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and the city’s disappearing canopy. With the use of biodata sonification systems installed in various old-growth trees, listeners can tune in and hear the trees’ “hidden life.” Hidden Life Radio’s “broadcast” is a generative musical composition unfolding in real-time, livestreamed twenty-four hours a day from leaf out in early summer until leaf drop in November. Laposky is a sound designer and artist based in Cambridge, MA. Through the use of biodata sonification and deep listening techniques, Laposky creates generative real-time sound installations, musical recordings, and live performances based on the dynamics of ecosystems that are often hidden or unconsidered. Sound design and scoring clients have included A24 Films, PBS, New York Times, BBC, Arte, Nike, Smart Design, Museum of Modern Art, Neato Robotics and many more. skoobylaposky.com
Image: Skooby Laposky, Hidden Life Radio, 2021, mixed media