Kathleen Hodges's avatar Kathleen Hodges

ACCOMMODATE. Original photographs are incorporated with mixed media techniques and ephemera to create a collage in the spirit of Dr. Seuss's The Lorax: "who speaks for trees?" ACCOMMODATE's surreal images depict the fate of trees affected by the aggression of utilities' rights-of-way in our landscape: chopped, altered, reconfigured and forced to adapt.**** Upon working on this piece, I began to realize a symbiotic relationship could exist between the trees and utility poles that allows human connection and communication to take place. So it appears it is not the disfigurement of the trees, as much as it is, the disregard for their form and function--the balance is not considered. If one truly wished to regard and honor trees, one would approach the "pruning" with some kind of sensibility. **** ACCOMMODATE is also a pictorial metaphor for us to ponder and ask, "How much can I be chopped, altered, reconfigured and forced to adapt? How much do I accommodate to the will and needs of others? Where is my voice?" **** A poem by Joyce Kilmer, Trees, is used in the collage. The following references quoted support the ideas that trees are alive, live in communities, help support each other with kinship and nourishment, and give away their energy at the time of their deaths. Could this be why a symbiotic relationship could exist between a pole and a tree?**** "That's true at a global level of course, as well. We're losing hundreds of thousands of acres of forest. In the first 12 years of the millennium, we lost 2.3 million square kilometers of forest, and only 800,000 regrew. That is an important fact when we're looking forward into the human future. Will we thrive on this planet? That question is tied to (whether) forests thrive. So what's true on the city block at a very micro scale is also true at a planetary scale." (David Haskell, How Listening to Trees Can Help Reveal Nature's Connections)**** "Life persists through connecting with other life forms to find solutions." (Haskell)**** "There is no such thing as an individual within biology. Instead the fundamental unit of life is interconnection and relationship." (Haskell)**** "The thing that surprised me the most is how social trees are." (Peter Wohlleben, The Hidden Life of Trees)**** "If we care..., then we're going to do a better job of stewarding our landscapes." (Suzanne Simard, Exploring How and Why Trees 'Talk' to Each Other)**** With permission, Sarah Richards's photo rests in the belly of the focal tree. Captured while attending the Barefoot and Free Yoga Festival, the photo spurs the imagination suggesting that trees may desire to be "barefoot and free."

Entry Details
  • Art form: 2-D
  • Depth: 1 1/2 inches
  • Medium: Original photography, mixed media,collage
  • Width: 24 inches
  • Year created: 2017
  • Height: 24 inches