An inland sea disappears before our eyes. Coastal wildfire smoke drifts into the basin, mingling with toxic dust particles from the dry lake bed. We are downwind, with an economy reliant on poor land-use practices which cause ancestral forests to burn and inland seas to dry up. As the land bears its final unrequited offerings to us, The Last Gestures are a representation of the final offerings presented to us by the land as “natural resources”. We now have a choice to find reciprocity in our relationship with the land, or to keep viewing it as only a resource to extract from.
The wood element of Last Gesture 2 is sourced from a reclaimed pine pallet which travelled to the Great Basin from a far away carrying consumer goods. The wood element of Last Gesture 1 is sourced from an Indigenous Ponderosa Pine which lived its whole life in the Great Basin. The barbed wire is reclaimed from a fence which once separated “wilderness” from pasture before it was burnt down in a large wildfire. Salt which was extracted from Great Salt Lake is in conversation with these gestures, grounding them in their final homes at the bottom of Lake Bonneville.
As the land bears its final unrequited offerings to us, The Last Gestures are a call for local stewardship. Find your ecological passions, search out people who are working towards solutions in those areas, build community, depolarize environmental dialogue, learn how your homeland was cared for before it was colonized, deepen your sense of place, offer something back to the land which sustains us.