January 17, 2020

Do we see ourselves as part of the natural cycle or as onlookers?

Tim Chalk, 64

Does nature feel like a threat or do we embrace it? Connecting with nature isn’t just about gazing at sunsets and autumn leaves – sometimes it’s about killing a rabbit for food, or culling a herd to preserve an environment. Sometimes we need to cut down trees to let light through and stimulate new growth, or burn grass to let the fresh grass grow through … and we need to understand in the depths of our souls when this is the right thing to do; or we end up being the ecological vandals that humans have become. We need to stop viewing a sanitised version of “nature” through rose-tinted glasses and screens. Urbanisation has made us experience “nature” as a recreational facility, not an essential part of life – and death. In this artwork “The Twa Corbies” of the old Scots ballad sit on a branch discussing how to share out the body of a dead man – they’re not evil; they and the dead man are inseparable parts of an ecosystem! “As I was walking all alane, I heard twa corbies making a mane; The tane unto the t’ other say, “Where sall we gang and dine today?”

The Twa Corbies, 2017Plaster, Straw, Oak60cm(w) x 40cm(d) x 60cm(h)