Silent Spring 2015
"The variety and multiplicity of threats to pollinators and pollination generate risks to people and livelihoods, these risks are largely driven by changes in land cover and agricultural management systems, including pesticide use." (UN Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES). 2016)
“For the first time in the history of the world, every human being is now subjected to contact with dangerous chemicals, from the moment of conception until death. In the less than two decades of their use, the synthetic pesticides have been so thoroughly distributed throughout the animate and inanimate world that they occur virtually everywhere. They have been recovered from most of the major river systems & even from the streams of groundwater flowing unseen through the earth.”
-Rachel Carson 1962
My recent focus on the end of life for bees seems a prescient telling of this crisis. Bees, among nature’s most prolific builders of ingenious architectural structures, are critical to our very survival.
In 2015 I found a colony that collapsed. I photographed dead bees daily for about two months. I also collected each specimen. This series is a macro view into the cycle of death. There are 130 individual bees in the series.
This artwork will hopefully begin a dialogue and a push towards saving our environment. Our bees and butterflies have been dying. We need to plant more wildflowers. We must stop the use of pesticides.
Every Spring we await the arrival of luscious greens and flower blossoms. Without the bee population humans will have to take paint brushes and flower by flower try to pollinate each and every plant. The task is overwhelming. Bees are estimated to be a billion dollar industry. We must begin to protect them. We must at least become aware of our impact on the environment.
“All this has come about because of the sudden rise and prodigious growth of an industry for the production of man-made or synthetic chemicals with insecticidal properties. This industry is a child of the Second World War. In the course of developing agents of chemical warfare, some of the chemicals created in the laboratroy were found to be lethal to insects. The discovery did not come by chance: insects were widely used to test chemicals as agents of death for man.”
-Rachel Carson 1962