Annette Barbier

trees/paper/book (2014)
modified book
8 x 10 in.

Having lived for many years on the edge of a forest preserve, Barbier came to  know intimately the daily moods of the wildlife, the little lake, the insects, plants and trees. Upon close and repeated inspection, it became clear how compromised and un-natural our nearby “natural” places are. Her work came to change in focus from the personal and domestic to a consideration of our place in the environment, focusing on our estrangement from the natural world. It addresses the anthropocene, suggesting that humans are not above or outside of nature, but rather embedded in it, even in an urban setting. It calls attention to human organizational strategies such as printed books, contrasting them with nature’s more organic approach. Issues such as overpopulation, extinction, the impact of invasive species, and the unforgiving nature of the built environment are examined and critiqued.