An Elephant Never Forgets (All Occasions)
Mixed Media (including an Alocasia leaf, acrylic paint, sorrel and turmeric)
An Elephant Never Forgets (All Occasions)- This piece is essentially a triptych, combining a canvas and two USPS medium sized priority mail boxes (to ensure you get the message). The central piece is an Alocasia, or Elephant Ear plant, that inspired the name. The background of this part of the piece is made from Sorrel, a plant similar to hibiscus that turns a blood red color when boiled, and dries a blueish color, as well as some turmeric for a deep yellow/orange hue. I used sorrel flowers to dye the canvas, rubbing the boiled leaves into the canvas until it left a bluish stain. I printed onto the boxes with the Alocasia leaf and red paint, and combined the pieces with a homemade paste to ensure a strong and sturdy finish. This piece was all about the process to me, each part felt symbolic in its own way and called to mind the ways that our ancestors made art before they had things like oil or acrylic paint, making use of plants and flowers to paint on cave walls- and I felt very prehistoric doing it! I wanted to get back to my roots, in a way- most of this was done with my hands, flowers, and the stalk and leaf of the plant; I didn't use a paint brush at all. I thought about the ways that we can ignore nature in order to fill our greed, and the elephant ear print on a priority mail box seemed like a fun way to express that. Elephants are known to have both a very long memory, and to hold funerals for their loved ones. While I was working on it, I thought about the story of the elephant that walked miles to interrupt the funeral of a woman that it had killed weeks prior. The act had the internet in an uproar, wondering what would prompt such an event, and I'm not sure how true it is, but it was said that the woman and several people in her town had been hunting elephants for their tusks and that this was revenge. The ways that we misuse and abuse nature don't go unnoticed, and just like I haven't forgotten some old tricks, nature doesn't forget the ways that we take more than we should. This piece serves as a warning, a tribute, and an opportunity to think about the connections between past and present, the natural and artificial, and a reminder to think twice before messing with elephants! You may end up called back to the land sooner than you thought if you mistreat it, and its inhabitants.
If you are interested in purchasing this piece, please contact Tori Munoz firstname.lastname@example.org