All images copyright © 2016 Chris Ramsay. All rights reserved.

Artist Statement

 

My artwork is informed by objects that I have collected or found, often while on walks.  The materials are both man-made and natural and are often aged or eroded in some way-evidencing change.  I integrate collected objects into my work as a metaphor for the cycle of change that all materials and objects are affected by, including myself.  This process provides a vehicle for me to consider my place on earth and my part in nature.  I fabricate structures that have a form relative to the theme of the piece to insert these objects or I sometimes literally work into larger objects that I find such as globes, branches or large stones.

Sustainable / UnSustainable

Recently I have been learning how to design in 3D modeling software to operate a large format CNC Milling Machine.  Receipt of a 2016 Tulsa Artist Fellowship has provided a nurturing environment for me to explore software and CNC equipment with frequent access to the Tulsa FabLab.  The two artworks Sustainable & UnSustainable are the first pieces to demonstrate my growing understanding of those processes.

 

The form and content of these pieces is informed by a Fall 2015 Artist-in-Residency at Crater Lake National Park where I focused on observing the effects of climate change upon the park habitat. Evidence of global warming and climate change was not difficult to discover as the largest fire in recent park history took place during my visit resulting from extreme drought conditions. 

 

In Eric Roston’s 2008 book, The Carbon Age, he explains that the earth cycles carbon over 350-400 million-years which led me to visualize the earth as a living-breathing life force that could sustainably balance the carbon cycle. However, one primary problem of climate change today is that we humans are reintroducing (by excavating and burning) ancient forest carbon and removing contemporary forests (that extract carbon-dioxide and produce oxygen) at an alarming rate that is creating an unsustainable presence of carbon-based emissions that trap heat within our planet’s atmosphere producing a litany of growing disastrous side effects that threaten our very existence on this planet.