Timothy Vermeulen

Gallery Affiliations: Packer Schopf Gallery

Region: Midwest

I am interested in the juncture between Design and Nature, specifically design that is meant to be consumed in the form of fashion, decoration, art, and music. Perhaps in today's urban-influenced culture, in light of concerns about the environment and rapidly dwindling resources, people are changing their relationship to nature. More and more I am seeing wall-mounted decals of birds, silhouettes of tree branches on t-shirts, and artwork that seems to gravitate toward very specific animals and other natural imagery. There seems to be a collectively conscious move towards the flattening and codification of nature.

In my current work I am exploring what makes certain of these images attractive to people such that again and again, they are appropriated--taken a very far distance from their original embodiment in the wild and presented as Design. Possibly this proliferation of slick, stylized natural imagery, even the trend of animal-named indie bands, is our culture's way of connecting to nature when many people don't interact with the natural world on a regular basis. The desire to surround oneself with representations of nature is certainly not a new phenomenon, but perhaps the present trend bears an urgency that makes such images as unsettling as they are attractive.