Tag Archives: Spring

Exploring Nature Through Art

Here in the Pacific Northwest, we tend to hibernate during the winter months. My neighbors and I joke around about not seeing each other for months. In mid-March we suddenly start to converge on the street for spontaneous, tiny block parties to catch up and celebrate spring. (We also joke around about our coffee and beer consumption during winters in Portland, but that’s another blog post for another time.)

Spring is such a magical time with plants unfurling and blooming in vivid colors and divine shapes. The pale landscape starts to light up with color and dance with texture. It’s no surprise that so many artists are inspired and deeply connected to nature. Two of our calendar titles, Environmental Art and Land Art, show an extraordinary array of styles with nature and natural elements playing the central role.

EA15-06-blogThree Portals
Spencer Byles, forest materials, France, 2012
Featured in the Environmental Art 2015 wall calendar:

Environmental art takes many forms. It can be a thought-provoking presentation of nature in an urban landscape or an illumination of beauty that draws our awareness to our earthly surroundings. It can also be sublimely emotional, as with “Three Portals,” created by Spencer Byles. Approaching the portals, looking through to the path beyond, evokes a primal mystery. The forest bears witness to a rite of passage that can symbolize whatever you wish. The surroundings are as much a part of a work of environmental art as what the artist contributes. Byles says, “When working in forests or mountains or by a river with natural materials, I might leave the work for a period of weeks or months to allow nature to weave its way back onto, around, and through the materials before I return to complete it. The sculptures look more grounded in their environment once this action takes place.” Continue reading

May Day – Something for Everyone to celebrate!

2015 Posters for Peace and Justice wall calendar

Published in the 2015 Posters for Peace and Justice wall calendar.
In 2012 dozens of groups around the country decided to change that. They coordinated a general strike to take place on May Day that year, encouraging people to avoid school and work and to take part in Occupy-inspired protests against economic inequality.
Hugh D’Andrade contributed to the movement with this poster, inspired by a nineteenth-century May Day broadside by Walter Crane. He released the poster online, under a Creative Commons license, and encouraged people to download it and use it as they saw fit. Its reach spread far and wide on blogs, news sites, and community boards.

May 1st, often called May Day, just might have more holidays than any other day of the year. It’s a celebration of Spring. It’s a day of political protests. It’s a neopagan festival, a saint’s feast day, and a day for organized labor. In many countries, it is a national holiday. Continue reading