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Christopher Reiger,
Archival Digital Print
Edition of 100

Signed and Numbered Certificate

[$25] 10 1/2 x 8 1/2

*Editor's Choice
It's no secret that Christopher is one of our favorite artists; his work has appeared in Artworld Digest Magaine twice over the years, a rare distinction. In this piece, we see the natural world made subsidiary to our laziest desires. Mother Nature is indeed the star of the show, but her luster is fading fast. -Editor

Artist Comments:

My work is principally concerned with contemporary man's mutable conception of Nature. Growing up on the rural Delmarva Peninsula, I became acquainted with the local flora and fauna at a young age. Whether working at field chores, hunting, fishing, or simply playing, my outdoors experiences were akin to the Wonderland exploits of Lewis Carroll's Alice. Carroll's premise, that "things get curiouser and curiouser," guided me through many a childhood adventure. I anthropomorphized animals and cast them as key players in an epic production of which I, too, was a part. For me, as for Alice, the natural world was enchanted and ethical in an unsentimental way.

As I matured, however, my childhood love of nature evolved into a fascination with biology and ethology, an intellectual ontogenesis like that impelled by the European Enlightenment. In the 16th century, educated Europeans began to distinguish between fantasy and fact, between myth and history. They gradually abandoned enchantment and magic in favor of analysis and rigorous experimentation, hallmarks of the scientific method. This preference holds today.

Yet, incidentally, we've realized that the divide between the imagination and reason is unnatural. The English poet and critic, John Ruskin, alluded to this schism when he wrote of "the broken harmonies of fact and fancy, thought and feeling, and truth and faith." Indeed, although we today learn an increasing number of facts about Nature, we understand ourselves to be apart from it, and our experience of it is therefore less complete.

My artwork is born of this apparent opposition. The paintings are celebratory hybrids of myth, natural history, and science; the world they picture stretches between the tidy "truth" and the messy question. They depict a world in flux, a Nature imploding and dissolving. But this dissolution is also an opening of the senses, the seepage of magic and mystery into the picture. The drawings are poetic vignettes that explore the same ideas and questions.

Decoration on the Sri Mariamman Temple