Ancient Trees, Portraits Of Time...Unique And Magnificent!

Friday, March 13, 2015 | |
Some photographers specialize in portraits of people, some traveling to more distant destinations to capture wildlife, others inspired by natural landscapes. Beth Moon could belong to all three categories, the nature of her work, though, is a bit different. For almost 15 years, the American photographer travels the world looking for old growth trees, which are the "stars" of a series of black and white portraits titled "Ancient trees: portraits of the time." Shot with analog camera and printed with the difficult and time-consuming method of platinotypes (platinum print), images of covering a very wide range of gray tones and stand out for their depth and brightness.

From the majestic, endangered baobab of Madagascar to oldest oak in Britain and 4,000 years old pines of California until strange Dracaena –dragon tree or "dragon's blood" for the locals- that grows exclusively in Socotra Island in the Indian Ocean: focusing on investigations in history books and Botany at forest service records, newspaper articles and traveler testimonials, the artist chooses trees based on old age, the sheer size or their remarkable story. For example, the large baobab South Africa is believed to have given shelter to fighters of the anti-apartheid movement, and according to legend its trunk, old oak forest Sherwood served as a hideout for Robin Hood and his men. Moon’s hope is that the images will contribute to the promotion and protection of the "largest and oldest living monuments of the Earth", as she calls it, most of which face a variety of threats.
In the past, Moon has experimented with a wide range of topics, but always returns to the natural environment. In the section "Thy kingdom come" attempts to reconstruct the rituals connecting humans with the rest of the animal kingdom from the beginnings of mankind. The series «The Savage Garden» compose portraits carnivorous plants, while a pair of ravens are the heroes of the series «H cave of Odin." The newest section of the project, entitled «Diamond Nights», consisting of colored trees portraits with background starry sky or the saddle, processed to look like paintings.

Since 1999, Beth Moon has presented his work in more than 60 solo and group exhibitions in the US, Europe, Israel, Singapore and elsewhere. Her works include, among others, in the collections of the Museum of Fine Arts Houston and the Museum of Photographic Arts in San Diego. The book "Ancient Trees: Portraits of Time» recently was published by Abbeville Press. More information about Beth Moon and her work: www.bethmoon.com.

It sounds strange but there are many trees on the planet born a few thousand years ago and continue to survive!

Imagine that those trees sprouted before the creation of ancient civilizations and continue to grow even today!

Sources: Abbeville, Bored Panda, Colossal

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