Text for solo exhibition Libido of the Forest at SITUATIONS, New York, NY

Libido of the Forest

Shortly after traveling from New York to DC for the 2017 Women’s March, I felt an intense desire to inhabit an earthy, infinite range of feeling, to cultivate a curiosity of fragility, sadness, grief, rage and death but also a sensual fervor of joy—experiments in imagination. I felt compelled to draw flowers, every day. To paraphrase Beverly Dahlen in her 2008 essay “On Beauty,” beauty is not required for aesthetics (if it were, beauty would function merely as a commodity); beauty is essential for life. “As we would wish not to be orphaned in the world, nor abandoned, nor abused, so we would wish ‘wholeness, harmony, clarity,’ not only for ourselves, but for the world we live in… The question of beauty is an ethical question.” To say that a daily practice of drawing flowers holds any element of activism might seem absurd. It is a very stupid thing to draw a rose. But balancing the brutal impacts of aggression with an unapologetic indulgence in beauty has, for me, felt completely necessary.

Libido of the Forest (After Paul Klee), 2018, ink and pastel on paper, 8 1/2 x 9 inches