Monday, February 25, 2013

"In the Garden"

“In the Garden” was commissioned by a patron in New Zealand — it's a diptych featuring two trees from the Garden of Eden: the Tree of Knowledge and the Tree of Life.

The trees are similar in structure, underscoring the ambiguity of whether these trees were two different trees or, in fact, the same tree — as has been posited by scholars over the years.

On the left, the Tree of Knowledge is backed with cut up texts related to the tree and the knowledge that came from it; it also features small fruits to tempt Eve and Adam. There are glimpses of the Bible, of encyclopedia entries and textbooks — with references to apples, belief, and the traditions that have sprung from this story.

On the right, the Tree of Life is alive with natural greens and browns from cut-up comic books and other textures, featuring three red fruits. The tree is a study of life, for while it is composed of wood and leaves, those are representations on paper which only symbolize those natural elements; and yet, that paper is made from wood, which of course is a more literal backing of the tree’s forms.

Comics used include:
  • Animal Man #3 (January 2012)
  • Azrael #3 (July 2009)
  • Batman #493 (May 1993)
  • Batman: Lovers and Madmen (2008)
  • Daredevil: The Man Without Fear, v2 #56 (March 2004)
  • Flash Annual #2 (1988)
  • Green Lantern Corps #47 (June 2010)
  • JLA: Liberty and Justice (November 2003)
  • The Lone Ranger #25 (January 2011)
  • The Power Company #4 (July 2002)
  • Powerless (2005)
  • Shazam! Power of Hope (November 2000)
  • Teen Titans #4 (December 2003)
  • Trinity #23 (November 2008)
  • Vermillion #4 (January 1997)
  • The Last of the Greats #5 (February 2012)
Other texts used include:
  • Cavins, Dr. Lorimer V., ed. The Wonderland of Knowledge, Volume 1. Publishers Productions, Inc., 1938.
  • Cohen, Mortimer J. Pathways Through the Bible. JPS, 1946.
  • Cohen, The Reverend Dr. A., ed. The Soncino Chumash. Soncino Press, 1947.
  • Emerson, Ralph Waldo. Essays by Ralph Waldo Emerson. Thomas Y. Crowell Company, 1951.
  • Farb, Peter. LIFE Nature Library: Geology. TIME-LIFE Books, 1963.
  • Holst, Bernhart P., ed. World-Scope Encyclopedia, Volume 1. Readers League of America, 1945.
  • Raisin, Dr. Jacob S., Ph.D. The Haskalah Movement in Russia. JPS, 1913.

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