PORTFOLIOS > Natural History


My series "Natural History" is bearing witness to both the beauty and the brutality of life on Earth. Using my original photography layered with specimens from museum collections and birds killed when striking buildings in Washington, DC during the migration season, I feel myself working through the overwhelming grief of world events, never getting any closer to making sense of senseless manmade destruction. This is on the surface, work about environmental degradation but the once-living creatures portrayed are symbols of a deeper truth.

I almost feel like this series, and life in general right now, should come with a trigger warning, because at least for me, the news of the day is stirring up a lot of my own past griefs- the loss of my twin daughter chief among them. But I urge myself not to look away from the world's sorrow, but instead, the most positive thing we can do with trauma is to transmute pain into creative action that helps ourselves and other people feel their feelings instead of hiding them away unhealed, only to re-emerge later in the body as dis-ease.

Sit with grief for just a little while as a rite of passage. Pay your respects to the beauty in the life that was, then turn toward the beauty in the life that is. I saw you. I see you.

“You must go on. I can't go on. I'll go on.”
― Samuel Beckett, The Unnamable