Apis Mellifera Exploration
My work here explores honey bee (Apis Mellifera) society and how we humans interact with it. Bees existed several millennia without human interaction. Now humans have constructed homes and industry which has shrunk honey bee habitat, and promoted agriculture which utilizes toxic pesticides which negatively effect bees. We have to try to lessen the bad effects on bees that human society has caused and work towards promoting environmental actions that bolster these and all pollinators numbers.
The work I have created about the bees comments on their lifestyle, the factors of concern in their dwindling numbers, and pollination issues. I have used a number of media to create this work. Paint, drawing , collage, encaustic, prints, and carving are visible in these pieces.
The latest work on the bees has become abstracted and speaks to the "bee dances," the patterns that bees fly to communicate to their peers where the food is, how far, and what it is. These circular, figure eight, and elliptical patterns are so precise and fascinating that I have been compelled to illustrate them.
I keep bee hives in Napa Valley where there were fires in 2017. My bees left the hive due to (most likely) the massive amount of smoke. So, I learned the valuable lesson that mother nature is in charge, not me. I have new bees and the hives hopefully will be healthy for the coming years.