|Ramsey Library Exhibits
Natural Domain Series
"Insects won't inherit the earth -- they own it now."
While we stake our claim on the earth,
mapping and describing territory in human terms of ownership and use, rarely do we think
of the creatures and plants that also claim territories. They too own the earth, their
ancient life cycles connected to the minute differences in terrain, climate, soil type.
Insects interested me because of their strange yet familiar forms, distinct from yet so
connected to the human world. Ever since I came to the Appalachian region I've been struck
by the jewel-like beauty of their humming droves, and awed by the unique variation of each
beetle. And in May of 1995 I witnessed a most remarkable event of thousands of 13 year
cicadas emerging from the earth to mate, in an area which on the map was at one time
intended to be flooded. Such experiences of both place and animal life are the source of
the Natural Domain Series.
The topographical map with all its intricate contour lines fascinates me because in represents both our wish to control nature and our desire to understand it. Using such maps with the insects I find within their domains fulfills my wish to explore my earthly surroundings, and discover the other lives we share the planet with.
Suzanne Stryk is a professional artist from Bristol Virginia.