Monday, October 12, 2009

Man, Nature ... and Alexis Rockman


Alexis Rockman (born 1962) is an American contemporary artist known for his paintings depicting the precarious relationship between man and nature. He has been exhibiting his work internationally since 1985, when he received a BFA in fine arts from the School of Visual Arts. His artworks are information-rich depictions of how our culture perceives and interacts with plants and animals, and the role culture plays in influencing the direction of natural history.

Believing that the past provides clues to the future, Rockman’s 8-by-24-foot mural, Manifest Destiny offers a view of the Brooklyn waterfront after catastrophic climate change. Consulting with experts in various fields, Rockman shows the haunting outcome 3000 years in the future past the ruins of the Brooklyn Bridge, following a sea-level rise caused by global warming. Included are the wrecks of a Dutch sailing ship and a 20th-century submarine, tropical plants and animals, and a two-tailed salmon resulting from genetic manipulation. Rockman's project suggests what the remote geological, botanical, and zoological future might bring, predicting the ecosystem of the area thousands of years ahead. This epic painting was first exhibited from April 2004 - September 2004 at the Brooklyn Museum of Art in Brooklyn, New York.

Rockman's 2004 journeys in Tasmania are recorded in the book Carnivorous Nights, with his accompanying artwork.

Alexis Rockman works and lives in New York City.

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