Remnants, a Visual Survey of Human Progress

 
This series of portraits is Cromie's reaction to the ongoing reduction by human activity of natural habitat. Built using the small pieces of the contemporary viewing pane, these collage quilts pay homage to traditional home economics and to the Arts and Crafts movement of the late 19th century. The vertical format reflects the traditional portrait proportions of influential individuals. The repeated use of small pieces relates to how we build our impression of the world without experiencing it.
 
Twenty-six original drawings have been letterpress printed, hand cut into 1,500 pieces and glued into five portraits. The sources for the nature drawings are mostly archival, some from the internet, some from the cabinets of the Beaty Biodiversity Museum, and a few from nature. What is always missing is context. The design of the man-made elements in the style of traditional wallpaper is Cromie's response to the appropriation of ‘Green’ currently utilized to promote everything from gasoline to urban towers. Humans are absent in the portraits because as individuals we do not see our relationship to the changes in the environment.
 
Dana Cromie
Artist in Residence 2012-2014, UBC Botanical Garden
 
Cromie has travelled in North America and around the world exploring gardens and plants in the wild, and spends much of his time in California enjoying gardens, plants and nature. He is a member of numerous garden-related groups and his own urban organic diverse garden has been toured by the Alpine Garden Club of British Columbia, Vancouver Hardy Plant Group, and Vancouver Rhododendron Society.
The primary subject matter in Cromie’s representational works has been floral. In 2010, he chanced to take a class in Botanical Watercolour with Alison Watt at UBC Botanical Garden where he has volunteered for twelve years. This class reawakened the artist’s drive and the resulting work led to his appointment as Artist in Residence at UBC Botanical Garden.
Venue
 
Beaty Biodiversity Museum, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada http://beatymuseum.ubc.ca/
 

 

  • Balsamorhiza deltoidea, Hordeum brachyantherum, Lotus unifoliolatus, Hedera helix, "Mini-collage", collage of relief prints on paper, 10" X 10", (c) 2013 Dana Cromie