It Doesn’t Look Like Paradise, Cara Despain, Solo Exhibition
These paintings are pure carbon from burnt debris collected from the recent, extremely intense fires in California. These transformer explosion-induced fires leveled entire towns and burned thousands of acres in minutes. These events point to the larger phenomenon of increasingly severe and prolonged fire seasons in the western states--both in wildlife-urban interface zones and in backcountry areas. Landscape painting has long sought to idealize territories, often for expansionist purposes and this was particularly true in the American context. The paradises depicted in the paintings were both harbingers of the consequences to follow and denials of the realities of colonization, resource extraction, land management, and land ownership. Smelling of smoke and shedding ash, these are landscape paintings of the new North American west.
Friday, January 11 at 5:00pm to 8:00pm
Art Building Galleries: Retzlaff Gallery