FACULTY GUEST BLOGGER: JOHN MEZA
John Meza: As an environmentally conscience individual, one of my core values is to help protect and sustain our planet. This philosophy governs my daily consumption and waste cycles, and now even extends in to my art making.
Avian Terraglyph, shown above, is an image that comes from my most recent body of outdoor works or Eco Friendly Art. I was interested in creating art forms and images that generated very little or no negative impact on the environment. The inspiration for my concept came from a synthesis of the ancient Nazca line drawings in Peru, and Zen Gardening. One day I noticed how my front yard was covered with a thin layer of clean white snow. The next day it melted and then became covered again. This cycle repeated and gave me the impression wiping a slate clean, similar to a giant scale Etch-a Sketch or chalkboard. So, I decided I had to utilize this resource and create a large scale drawing in that space.
The materials incorporated in my Eco Friendly processes are all-natural and range from the ephemeral to the eternal. The themes and motifs are nature-based as well. Pennsylvania bluestone is turned into a dragonfly, mammoth sunflowers become theatre masks, and an ice disk transforms itself into the cold winter sun low on the horizon. The work is largely site-specific and eventually documented with photography.
As a Fine Artist, I am constantly entering my work into regional and national juried competitions. This is a practice I have been conducting since graduate school. Last year, out of 1800 entries, Avian Terraglyph was one of 114 works accepted in to the annual prestigious “Art of the State 2014” exhibition this summer. It was on display in the State Museum in Harrisburg from June to September.
More recently, Avian Terragylph was accepted and garnered one of three “Best of Show” awards in “The Crow Show”, an international juried competition hosted by The San Diego Art Institute. The Crow Show is presently on exhibit from February 2 -27, 2015. The “3 Best of Show” Artists are also featured in The Studio Door gallery’s online magazine “The Monthly” which can be viewed at: http://issuu.com/thestudiodoor/docs/feb_the_monthly_sm/1
More images and a review of The Crow Show can be found at: http://pickedrawpeeled.blogspot.com/2015/02/crow-at-studio-door.html
John Meza is an Associate Professor of Art at Marywood University