Why is Ecological Art the Answer? Preface to a Book Part 1

Published on 2018-07-10

My question was how to save the Earth.

For a long time, I had been looking for a good story about hope. I thought the answer was in reconceiving how men and women relate to each other, and thereby, to the rest of the world. I grew up in a patriarchal family of political refugees and war survivors. Those who survived, fled Eastern Europe. In time, my parents met in what was then Palestine and eventually they settled in New York. My Father became a successful international developer. My Mother became his vice-president. I grew up both fascinated and repelled by their work. Their history left me with lifelong ethical and practical questions about the collateral damage violence visits on families and the damage exploitation inflicts on habitats. I came to believe that patriarchy and misogyny were at the root of the problem. I asked, what if men were sometimes willing to be vulnerable and women often felt empowered to be strong? Would we value the rest of life more than we do? I asked myself these questions in the paintings I made during the early eighties. 

In the 1985 painting, “Falling” (4’ x 8’), I imagined a man falling and floating in a sky, brilliant with light and turbulent clouds, his entire being open to life, vulnerable and trusting, as a metaphor for the opposite of patriarchal behavior.