Second Nature describes the moment when all non-human life collided with the human market. We inhabit the ramifications of that moment, an environment of commodities.
We often imagine nature apart from the city, a complex known to William Cronon as ‘dangerous dualism.’ The ecosystems most of us inhabit, the mundane, utilitarian and utterly economic, are largely omitted from our understanding of nature. Instead we covet palm trees, waterfalls and mountain vistas, saturated 2 dimensional scenes that lend themselves to calendars and desktop backgrounds. The cerebral distance between the world of man and that of nature has grown so vast that many feel consumerism is the only way to bridge the gap. The pages of a nature magazine, the blue glow of an aquarium light or the petroleum in the plastic dinosaurs I played with as a child…
It’s estimated that by the year 2030, 5 billion people (nearly two thirds of the global population) will be living in urban areas. I worry that if we maintain this dualism, nature existing solely where humans do not, we relieve ourselves of living ethical and sustainable lives within the hybrid environments we have created.
This work examines the ways in which we decorate, decimate, and imagine urban ecologies. It attempts to recognize the persistent survival of non-human organisms within urban areas and erase the imaginary lines we’ve drawn between dominion of nature and man.