I grew up on Oahu in Hawaii, and being surrounded by such a lush but fragile island ecosystem instilled in me a reverence and respect for the environment that I treasure to this day. Within my lifetime I have witnessed the beaches I grew up playing on disappearing, deforestation, rampant mono-cropping, and planetary disregard for the environment which has lead us to this pivotal point in our planet's history. These are all things that I am thinking about while creating my artwork, but at the same time, I am aware that these are anxiety-inducing and difficult topics to bring up. The more I learn and the more science develops its understanding of the environment I think it's just so miraculous the way that nature communicates subtle information.
I think that the environment is the ultimate teacher of hidden information. If you look at plants and the way that they communicate with each other, and coexist in an environment that is constantly evolving, you can really start to see these intricate relationships, battles, and conversations playing out on micro and macro scales. We're finding out now that trees communicate with each other through basically a mushroom network that connects roots throughout the forests. They pass nutrients to each other and can warn each other of fires or infestations occurring miles and miles away. This sort of indirect communication and connection between these entities in the forest really reminds me of our intricate connections as humans and all the non-verbal ways that we communicate and connect with those around us and the environments we are in.
I try to weave information into my work in efforts to communicate with my viewers the subtlety and importance of the environmental messages I am conveying. I want to emulate that subtlety of communication and warning seen in the natural world in order to lure viewers into an empathy-driven response that drives their curiosity in learning more about the environments I am depicting.