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Growing up in the mountains outside of Ashland, Oregon, I spent my childhood immersed in nature. The beautiful and myriad patterns and forms that nature created to protect a seed or the soft body of a slug, the decorative crown of a pomegranate or the veins on a leaf were captivating to me. I was enthralled by the male deer growing weapons on their heads every year to fight for the chance to mate with the females and the rhythmic ruffles created by a millipede’s feet. Encountering taxidermy as a kid I was filled with horror and intrigue. The horns were so beautiful but an animal’s head sticking out of a wall was almost comical and seemed disrespectful to the majesty of twelve-point buck. Taxidermy’s ostensible celebration of nature was tainted by my perceived undercurrent of a disrespect of life. In this body of work, I’ve played with the fascination of the animal and plant kingdom in a fashion after Taxidermy. The sculptural forms of horns I’ve recreated in metal wires or wools. Other oeuvres of nature I’ve framed as decoration or a form of forensic investigation, similar to a taxidermy trophy but more a celebration of nature than of conquering life, which I found was what I was most uncomfortable with Taxidermy.
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