With the demands of a job, family, and every day life, it can be easy to ignore the larger issues that occur in our world. We’re creatures of routine and habit, and who can blame us? The world can be a complex and difficult place and if we spent all our time analyzing societies growing disconnect with nature, and the horrendous ways we treat animals and other living beings, we would all be incredibly depressed and overwhelmed.
While it may be easier to cope by just focusing on the every day and zoning out the rest, there does come a point when you look up and wonder how we got to this place. How could we let all this happen? This is the sort of awakening that artist, Amy Guidry, hopes to produce with her series “In Our Veins. ”
Guidry tells OGP, “The premise of my series “In Our Veins” is to explore the connections between all life forms and the cycle of life.”
Beyond this state of recognition, Guidry explains, “when someone views my work, they are drawn to it, they have an internal dialog with the painting, and they consider what they can then do as a result. I hope that my work will get people asking questions, inspiring them, and taking action.”
In her piece entitled “The Pack,” Guidry highlights the decline of the wolf species, a phenomena that is largely caused by humans. Guidry explains, “We are capable of wiping out entire species at an alarmingly rapid rate. Even though wolves are a dominant species and live in large groups, survival tactics that work in nature are no longer relevant in a human-dominated world.”
This sort of imbalance is highlighted in all of Guidry’s pieces, and they all exist as part of “normalized” society. For example, “Mother Nature” reverses the relationship between cow and human showing a calf nursing from a human breast, Guidry asks, “if this is bizarre, then why is it not when the roles are reversed?”
The ability to see past these sort of “bizarre” relationships is carried through to “Untitled (Heads),” showing animals as “parts and pieces,” by breaking down the animal we not longer consider the whole animal or connect it with the sentient being from which it came. To reflect their “human” characteristics, Guidry gives the animals “light colored eyes as opposed to large, dark doe eyes. Their faces are expressive and some evoke confidence.”
As humans we have no problem asserting our dominance over any number of other species, however in “Vulnerable” Guidry asserts that this mindset has lead to, “our complacency and taking the planet for granted.” While we pillage and pollute the planet at will, we are shocked and outraged when nature strike out against us. Using dark shadows, Guidry illustrates that this is a potential future we may face if we do not take action and change our ways.
“Exposed” is a call to action, one of the potential losses we are set to see if we don’t change the way we interact with the natural world. Placing the tiger (an animal poised toward extinction) aside a butterfly, the piece shows how fleeting life can be, especially when external factors are making life near impossible.
The piece, “Crutch” illustrates the issue that is so often brought to light on OGP, the connection between animal agriculture and climate change. Looking at the instability of the lives we’ve built on animal agriculture, this piece draws the connection that so few are willing to make.
In the final work, Guidry explains, “The life cycle is a prevalent theme in this series and “Symbiotic” epitomizes this. The cross-section of the tree and its roots shows how all life is connected, whether above or below the ground, each nourishes the other. The various animals, bones, insects, are all examples of life that is interconnected.”
A message that we can all take to heart and use as a constant reminder of why it is so important to live in a manner that has the least negative impact on other living forms. Whether it is a choice you make in your diet, a wasteful habit you correct, or simply the way you treat the sentient beings in your life, every choice and action you make is connected to a larger web of life. Sometimes art is better at expressing all the things we believe, share this post to inspire others to change their perception of how they treat the planet.
To see the full gallery of Guidry’s work, check out her website, here.
All image source: Amy Guidry