Oikos: Lake Walk
The word ecology was coined by the German zoologist Ernst Haeckel, who applied the term oekologie to the “relation of the animal both to its organic as well as its inorganic environment.” The word comes from the Greek oikos, meaning “household,” “home,” or “place to live.” Thus, ecology deals with the organism and its environment.
I have embraced the term Oikos very loosely to mean "home", the earth. This particular installation was inspired in part by walks along the shores of Lake Erie. The work consisted of hundreds of hand-created "shells" made from both white and red earthenware. The shell-objects were then pit fired to add a mottled, tonal quality and to impart a sense of age. The 25 foot-long painted mural background referenced the strata of an archaeological dig. Visitors to the gallery were invited to dig through the 400 hundred of pounds of sand in which I had buried small clay shells encourage them to experience the tactile quality of both the sand and the clay object.