For some time now, I have been considering various forms of appropriation and its impact on art, culture and the environment. Artistic appropriation is one form that seems endlessly interesting and controversial. However, another form, the appropriation of natural resources for private gain is rarely considered from an artistic perspective. That is unfortunate because much of the development we see in the western US can be better understood if considered from this perspective. These images, a short series I call the “Forrest of Lost Trees”, suggests the impact of logging near Kellogg, Idaho. Here the ghost-like stumps of grand old growth trees, many six to seven feet or more in diameter, are overshadowed by a secondary forest.
The stumps of these remarkable giants are slowly rotting and sit idle among campfire rings and off road vehicle tracks. Here a forest was taken and the used up land was left abandoned. Fortunately, although there is great loss expressed here, the earth is resilient and a new forest – albeit somewhat diminished – is rebounding where the primordial one once stood. But the tragic loss is real and all but a few people who profited from this taking are a bit poorer for it.