Xavier Cortada: Water Paintings, Epoch & Native Flags
Image copyright Xavier Cortada, “Trilobite (Cambrian),” mixed media on paper, 12″ x 16″, 2017.
“Water Paintings,” an visual exhibition of works created at Hubbard Brook Experimental Forest by Xavier Cortada.
“Water Paintings allowed me to give water at Hubbard Brook’s nine watersheds a voice. In the work, I made water the protagonist. In June 2016, I placed nine pencil drawings and nine pieces of watercolor paper inside nylon mesh. I then tied the mesh bags to a rope at each of the nine weirs at Hubbard Brook Experimental Forest and left them there for a period of 16 weeks in 2016. The water flowing through the mesh stained the paper inside. Water samples and water data were collected by scientists over the same 16-week period from the same nine weirs. The final work included water samples, data, even the residue in filters. I wanted audiences to see the water, what the water did, and what it painted as it flowed and transported materials down the stream.” ~ Xavier Cortada
EPOCH - Visual Exhibit
"Through EPOCH, I’m trying to help us see ourselves in the context of the evolutionary history of planet Earth. We must realize that we are more than by-products of an ongoing life-making process that has dramatically developed since the Cambrian explosion 540 million years ago. We have succeeded unlike any other species has in the last 25 epochs. We are now in charge of our destiny and that of every other species.
As we move through the current epoch, the Anthropocene, humans themselves are changing the global climate and Earth’s ecosystems. Our reckless emission of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere, along with our extensive use of pesticides, our destruction of habitats for selfish human use, and our relentless population growth are greatly accelerating the rate of extinction of our fellow species." ~ Xavier Cortada
Native Flags - Film Exhibit
On June 29th, 2008, Miami artist Xavier Cortada arrived at the North Pole and planted a green flag to “reclaim it for nature.”
As the Arctic sea ice melts, nations clamor to raise their flags over newly open waters to claim the natural resources that lie beneath them – oil, manganese, diamonds, fish – and to control shipping lanes. Meanwhile, rising sea levels threaten the world below.
Cortada created this NYFA sponsored artist (see Artspire page) project to engage people globally to help slow the polar thaw: Participants plant a native tree next to a green flag at home and ask their neighbors to do the same. Reforestation reduces the greenhouse gases that cause global climate change.
During December 3-6, 2009, ecoartspace presented Native Flags at the Verge Art Fair in Miami Beach, Florida.