Jim Tisnado and Beth Blake Art Show in Gallery
October 1 @ 8:00 am - October 31 @ 5:00 pm EDT
Cyclical II: A collaboration by Beth Blake and Jim Tisnado
This body of work is a collaborative effort that reflects an ongoing undertaking to revitalize a piece of land in Eastern North Carolina. The work is an intuitive response to the labor and self-imposed responsibilities involved in land restoration.
The piece of land is small – 2.6 acres to be precise. It was once part of a single-family farm that was cultivated for decades. Corn, cotton, soybean, tobacco, and peanuts were, and still are, the primary crops grown in the surrounding fields. From the very beginning, we realized the need to reshape and recondition the land. Acknowledging that this would be a long-term endeavor, we began with what we could change using our own labor. We have planted over a hundred trees to provide future shelter and wind breaks from the open fields. Each spring we plant wildflowers to attract and feed birds and insects. We maintain the undergrowth to attract and support reptiles and amphibians.
For us this tiny piece of land is manageable. We can change the land the way we want, simply because it is small. We can choose our gardening methods based on our own availability of energy. We can catch all the rain we need to water our gardens as long as we have enough barrels for storage. Because we are not farmers, nor do we make a living from the land, we can manage our soil enhancement and pest control to appease our green intentions without concerns of starvation or financial ruin. However, the questions we ask and the restriction we impose upon ourselves regarding the management of this plot of land, have pushed our inquiry beyond the confines of our yard to address larger questions of global agricultural challenges. Questioning what we grow, where we grow it, and how we grow it. The pieces in this exhibition are an interpretation of our agricultural landscape and an effort to encourage a shift in agricultural practices.