A series of works based in the tradition of naturalism while acknowledging the newly minted Anthropocene epoch. It's as much about civilization as nature, as much about science as fiction. Detailed images and information make ambiguous pairings, allowing the viewer to bring his or her own knowledge and judgment to the piece.
I: Dunkleosteus/ Hellas-Planatia seabed/ Kuwait City
Dunkleosteus, a giant armored fish that dominated the Devonian, exemplifies a form that disappeared from the fossil record as quickly as it appeared.
II: Birch bark beetle/ Blythe geoglyphs/ Amazonian deforestation
The patterns etched by boring beetles, stone tools, and massive land movers are largely very similar.
III: Bruised cosmic microwave background radiation/ Male ants
V: Worker termites in mound/ Shuwaikh flour mill
Termite colony mounds feature complex ventilation systems, carefully cultivated fungal gardens, and networks of tunnels that provide access to storehouses, nurseries, and chambers that acknowledge social hierarchy.
VI: Lystrosaurus/ Indians at the River Ganges
For a period of many thousand years post Permian extinction, the group of mammal-like reptiles called Lystrosaurs were thought to comprise over 90% of animals living on land.
VII: Gorgonopsid/ Great Ziggurat of Ur/ Drought
The predatory therapsid family Gorgonopsidae was eradicated after severe climate change followed by geologic disruption near the end of the Permian.
VIII: Thylacine/ Pyramid of the Magician, Uxmal/ Forest fire
Thylacine, the last marsupial predator, was systematically annihilated under government order by the sheep farmers who colonized the island of Tasmania.
IX: Grey wolf/ Great Pyramid of Giza
X: Trilobite/ Aztec Calendar Stone
XI: Tasmanian devil with cancer/ Toba Caldera eruption
Inbreeding has resulted in Tasmanian Devil populations that are genetically identical. Consequently, lethal, non-viral cancer are spread simply via physical contact. Incidentally, the Toba caldera eruption nearly 74,000 years ago left less than ten thousand humans alive on the planet, resulting in a significant genetic bottleneck.
XIII: Desert Locust swarm/ Pudding/ Open-pit iron mine
The insatiable, scouring power of the locust swarm still has the capacity to devastate regions by exhausting all available natural resources.
XIV: Hadean land formation/ Hallucigenia/ Tidal island off Highway 101
XV: Trilobite/ Victorian tide computer
XVI: Limulus spawn gathering/ Moon phases/ Cro-Magnon tool
Limuli, by some unknown chemical means, understand the complex moon and tide cycles, allowing them to synchronize their beaching during mating season.
XVII: Backswimmer with fish/ North American soft tick/ Human hepatocytes with ebola
It's easy to think of food chains as dominated by complex, highly evolved organisms with more primitive creatures making up the lower rungs. In many cases, food chains flow in the opposite direction.
XVIII: Caddisfly larvae with casings/ Pueblo Bonito
Caddisfly larvae build ornate shelters by gathering raw materials from their environment and cementing that material with a natural silk binding.
XIX: Stromatolites/ Eclipse/ German apartment buildings
XXII: Coelacanth/ Animal Locomotion Plate No. 722
Coelacanth, a relative of the first fish to move onto land, has pectoral and pelvic fin pairs that move in opposite conjunction, mimicking the locomotion of a quadruped.
XXIII: Tardigrades/ Ganges River basin