Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Revised Artist's Statement

The following is what I plan to post on the gallery wall beside my photographs next month. I think I'm happy with it, but it still has some tweaking left to do... it's still very wordy, in my opinion.

In our society there is a tendency to shun the dead bodies of non-human, non-domesticated animals. These bodies are viewed as disgusting, offensive, repulsive, and useless things. Children are often instructed to avert their eyes from the dead creatures they might happen upon; the many different species of animals hit by cars are categorized simply as road kill; even the bodies of animals found in nature are sometimes doomed to be thrown away in a misguided effort to clean trash from the environment.

In nature, dead animals are far from disgusting, offensive, or useless. Their bodies are vital to the ecosystems of which they are a part, and countless animals depend upon the deaths of other animals to survive.

When I encounter a dead creature, it gives me pause. I consider the animal, its life, and how it might have died, but I also wonder how many other animals have depended upon its body, and how many more will in the coming days and months. I regard each dead animal I find as an individual, and I treat it as such. I choose to photograph them respectfully, portraying these creatures as the dignified beings they are, in life. In every stage of their decay, these animals are beautiful if not interesting, and I try to portray that through my photography. They are not offensive, they are not repulsive, and they are not useless creatures.

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