The artists of the earth
In honor of earth day and our upcoming film "One Precious Life" we are sharing the stories of artists who are using their artwork to honor nature.
Be sure to get tickets for the premiere of "One Precious Life" streaming live April 22nd at 5pm PDT. All proceeds go to reforestation company Community Carbon Trees!
1. Oladele Ogbeyemi
Environmental metal explorer
Based in Nigeria
"With the facts provided by experts on climate change, I have determined to contribute in the reduction of environmental pollution by going around my environment in search of junks such as metal, plastic, unused object which are harmful to us and repurpose them into art. Most of my art work has a connection with extinction and preservation. The junk I used is disposed by the user, which means that it is going into extinction. Just like how some people are no longer seeing the importance of protecting some creatures like Rhinos which are gradually going into extinction through excessive killing. I see this junk as creatures that have gone or are about to go in to extinction and try to preserve them by turning them into a memory and honoring them."
2. Linda Gass
Visual Artist / Environmental Art
Based in San Fransisco California
Artist Linda Gass in her studio, photograph courtesy of the artist.
"My art honors nature by drawing attention to the relationship between humans and the water and land that sustain them. My work explores how nature’s landscapes change over time focusing on those places where destruction and renewal, wounding and healing, absence and presence overlap. I’m drawn to the birds-eye view of the landscape because of how it reveals human marks and patterns. My study of these marks leads me to ask questions about their history and how they affect the health of the ecosystems which we rely on to survive. For example, did this aqueduct contribute to the drying up of lakes or rivers and creeks? Does this landfill site or recent wildfire affect water quality? Could this dam have caused a species to become endangered or extinct? I research to find answers to those questions and to the many new ones that arise in the process - thus allowing me to more deeply understand the changes to the landscape and the environmental implications.
The process of making my work echoes the theme of the destruction and renewal of nature. I often begin by making a painting on silk where I commit many of the same destructive acts that humans have done to the landscape: I cut into the fabric, tear it, poke holes into it with needles; I build the equivalent of dams and dikes using resists to contain my liquid silk dyes. When the painting is done, I stitch it by machine and by hand, invoking the tradition of mending and repair through the act of sewing. The aesthetic of beauty is important in all of my work; it helps make the serious and difficult nature of the subject matter I’m addressing more approachable
3. Jay Percy
Acrylic, Lino and Mixed Media Art
"In nature we trust" -Acrylic and gold leaf on A3 canvas
"My art always points to reminding fellow humans that we are nature. By reminding people that we are nature, I seek to provoke conversations around what it means to treat nature with the same level of respect, love and care we all deep down need for ourselves.
I feel that if I can remind people that they're a part of this great, wondrous thing, suddenly it no longer becomes this stranger that is outside of ourselves. It suddenly clicks that it is within us, and that makes the idea of caring for it tangible.
When an idea moves from the abstract and external to the tangible and internal, it becomes something that we're able to tackle. Caring for our environment, from reducing plastic, to flying less, to lobbying and boycotting the companies that contribute to its denigration, is more important now than it ever has been in our living memory.
Through my art, I discuss all these things and more. If I only ever reach one person, that's one person more than before and I can live with the joy and anticipation that they'll reach the next person."
4. Marla King (she/her)
Dance Artist, Climate Justice Advocate, Podcaster
Based in Wales, UK
"I wish for a future where there would no longer be a need to frame art through an environmentally conscious lens, because this consciousness would be a fundamental value embedded within society and ultimately through the art we are drawn to create. I would envision this consciousness to be rooted in our relationship to others, in the environment where we find ourselves, disseminating through the media we choose to express what we are drawn to. Environmentally conscious art must also be socially conscious art - these cannot be viewed or experienced as separate. As Audre Lorde states, “There’s no such thing as a single-issue struggle because we do not live single issue lives” and fostering awareness of these interconnections and creating and expressing from this level of understanding is truly essential in creating a more sustainable and just society within which the arts have a fundamental role to play.
I envision art to centre connection and circularity, in the way we create, the materials we may use, share with others and use again. It would never be wasteful, never exclusive, never exploitative and always collaborative. Art enriches community, therefore the values rooted within the art we create will shape the values that underpin communities. In the future of environmentally conscious art, I see the hopeful possibility of an environmentally and socially conscious world. "
5. Tanya Vida
Based in San Diego, Ca
"I am Sound.
I feel the Spirit of Creation call to my inner heart. Spirit comes alive within me: as the Wind, as the Ocean crashing, ebbing n flowing,
as Passion and Heat of Fire dancing.
I am Alive, being my nature in Nature.
One with all that is, bowing to the Sacred Awe of Beauty. The Tree flute against my lips sings in the Orchestra painted Life.
May what calls to me and gives me Wings on Eternal Winds call to you.