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The Green Sea:  Nature Conservancy at Work

A Group Showing

May 10 - June 10, 2005
The Artists:  May Britton, K. Dianne Hottenstein, Gillian Hurd, Anne May, Clay McGlamory,
Pam Ponce, Patricia Sterritt, Darella Wilson-Banks
  Pam Ponce - The Green Sea  
Pam Ponce  

  Patricia Sterritt - The Green Sea
Patricia Sterritt

The inspiration for this show comes from the artist's affinity to the natural world and concern for it's survival. We wanted to present to the public a visual image of our local wetlands, those fragile and complex lands to which we are connected. For this exhibit, seven printmakers and a sculptor join to depict the plants and habitat of The Nature Conservancy's Green Sea area.

Print processes have been used for centuries in botanical illustration. Woodcuts, engravings, and etchings have all been used to depict the natural world with sensitivity and veracity. The artists in this show continue to explore and expand the creative possibilities in print processes while depicting the rare wetland communities of southeast Virginia and North Carolina. Seven natural community types have been selected by The Nature Conservancy as targets for conserving the biodiversity and ecological processes of the Green Sea. For this exhibit, each community has been interpreted by one artist. Each artist has portrayed particular plants and animals through print: lithographs, screen prints, monoprints, linocuts, woodcuts, or collagraphs. The artists have gone beyond species identification to capture the essence of the life forms they are portraying. This distillation may be simply the image of tree bark or a leaf, or a more complex image of tangled leaves and stems. Some of the printmakers have used the actual plants to create images, thereby bringing a tangible connection between the art and the plant forms. This direct use of natural materials can also be seen in the work of the sculptor, who has used the natural elements of clay and water, as well as plant material such as pine cones in her work.

The artist's experience of these communities has been enhanced by "on site" observations and research into the ecology of the area. We have discovered these places by walking through them - discovering their grandeur and simultaneously, appreciating the wonderful variety and detail of the life that is present. In presenting this work, we want to give the viewer a chance to see these places and experience their beauty through our images. We also hope it will inspire concern for these rare wetlands that are disappearing so quickly from our landscape, and an appreciation for the work that the Nature Conservancy is doing in this area.