You must carry me now: on grieving and extinction

Wilson, Mark and Snæbjörnsdóttir, Bryndís (2018) You must carry me now: on grieving and extinction. In: Minding Animals International Conference (MAC4), 17-24 January 2018, Ciudad Universitaria, Mexico. (Unpublished) Full text not available from this repository.

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Abstract

The photographic work You Must Carry Me Now is a component of the project by Snæbjörnsdóttir/Wilson Trout Fishing in America and Other Stories (2015). The project was funded and hosted by the Global Institute for Sustainability based at Arizona State University. In the project the artists focused on endangered species still inhabiting the grand canyon. Because of a multitude of environmentally compromising human activities the California condor is now highly "managed" by humans and for it conservation efforts constitute critical "life support" systems. The artists worked alongside biologists in the field there at Vermilion Cliffs and in the Biological Collection at University of Arizona Tucson they made a series of 14 photographs from frozen condor cadavers. The photographs were then each presented together with a text revealing the individual life and behaviours of each bird as explained by the biologists information that would otherwise have been deemed as having no purpose and would in all probability been lost. By far the greatest number of these protected birds dies very young through lead poisoning as a result of feeding from contaminated gut piles discarded by hunters. The frozen bodies of these animals are thus political kept in this suspended condition in part as evidence of the causes of their demise. Through this work the artists bring insight into the complex and often awkward nature of our relationship to endangered species to conservation and to the environment more widely. In the light of a perceived gulf between science and its public they consider what is lost when scientists as close observers of ontological others are required by their discipline (and funders) to focus narrowly on data collection to the exclusion of material with the power to slow to affect and prompt human behavioural change.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Departments: Fine Arts
Depositing User: Anna Lupton
Date Deposited: 11 Jan 2019 14:51
Last Modified: 11 Jan 2019 14:51
URI: http://insight.cumbria.ac.uk/id/eprint/4350

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