Icons of Threatened & Endangered Species
My current work focuses on the holocaust of Nature we are witnessing, in particular species extinction, at a rate of 10,000-100,000 per year - one thousand times the natural rate. Based on these statistics, biologist E.O. Wilson estimates that if current trends continue, half of Earth's animal and plant species will be extinct by the end of this century.
It is clear that the Western mind is divorced from Nature, the primary condition that has lead to the current ecological catastrophe. I feel that the only way back - indeed our own survival - depends on nothing less than a re-enchantment with the Earth as a living reality.
It is for this reason that I have chosen to depict non-human species in a traditionally religious form - the icon, originating in the monasteries of 14th-16th century Russia - a practice that I have maintained for more than twenty years.
My aim in creating these works is to elevate non-human species to their rightful and equal place in the community of being. In the words of Thomas Aquinas,
Because the divine could not image itself forth in any one being, it created the great diversity of things so that what was lacking in one would be supplied by the others and the whole universe together would participate in and manifest the divine more than any single being.
These works fulfill my deep impulse to merge art, scientific understanding and religious sensibilities for the purpose of fostering a more integral, diverse and beautiful world. My wish is that they also strike a chord in you.
50% of the proceeds from the sale of these originals will benefit the Center for Biological Diversity, an organization devoted to protecting species that I've been supporting for many years, to help them carry out their invaluable work.
Click on images for larger view and information.
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