Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Whale Hunt

My work has always been about the world as I perceive it but has traditionally dealt with topics in a subtle and intentionally vague manner. Lately I have been thinking a lot about stewardship and trying to figure out how my work can positively affect things that are important to me. However, I think there are a lot of issues these days that need to be addressed by responsible people, so it’s taken me a while to figure out exactly how and to what extent I want to deal with issues in my work.

After some deliberation and lots and lots of sketching, I’ve ended up working on some paintings dealing with the human-ocean relationship. Here are a couple sketches that should give a hint of my visual version of the sea of along with a healthy dose of my usual imagery and themes.

While doing some research on turn of the century sea going vessels, I wound up looking into whaling and other destructive practices that most of us in America tend to think of as a problem that was solved long ago. Unfortunately that doesn’t seem to be the case as Japan and Iceland have continued this ridiculous practise using the “national tradition” and “culture” excuses, stating that killing a whale is the same as killing a cow which fortunately for several reasons, is not anywhere close. Here is a link to a film I stumbled upon regarding the slaughtering of dolphins, I highly recommend watching it, (and with the volume off) though it is not for the faint. I wish I had more to offer as to how one might put some effort into stopping this but alas I have no idea, I suppose that the more people that become aware of this the better. If I find something relevant, I’ll post it here.

With the images of dolphins being bled to death still fresh in my mind, the new issue of National Geographic arrived In my mail box yesterday with a very poignant couple articles about the vast abuse in the form of over fishing that is straining and thoroughly threatening the biodiversity of the worlds oceans. The short hand version of the article is that the appetite for fish in Asia, Europe, and the US, along with an explosion of commercial fishing and the utilizing of new technologies, has reached the point where scientists are questioning if some populations of fish are past the breaking point. Unfortunately, these are the fish I like to eat. So I think I’m going to have to swear off eating fish. I already don’t eat beef, pork or poultry mostly for health reasons, but now out of responsibility fish is nixed as well.

No comments: