a literary journal published by the Black Earth Institute dedicated to re-forging the links between art and spirit, earth and society
My images arise from the content and materials that I find in the environment, where I search for the border between harmony and disruption. An image or an exhibition works like an alchemical equation or a poem about a site or an interaction that holds beauty and tragedy. A conflict arises between the subject of the image, be it portrait or landscape, and, in the Chemical Spirit Landscapes, the invading toxin. This is where, through my practice, I seek solutions to imbalance. I wish for my work to reveal the presence of an inner sentient energy, an active relationship between all things, either living or inanimate.
In the Chemical Spirit Landscape series, I have visually layered an oily and pervasive substance upon the landscape to alter the appearance of the subject. This symbolizes an invasive spirit or stain that co-exists with the wild environment. To combine the words Chemical and Spirit in the same breath seems antithetical. I mean to insinuate that the seemingly insentient condition of petroleum-based substances and other contaminating pollutants is, by its own nature, interactive and discursively malevolent. Environmental toxins have substantial repercussions; the human spirit is a crucible of amelioration in its rejection of poisonous ideas and corrosive materials alike.
Tasha Ostrander was born in New York City in 1962. She moved to Santa Fe in 1970 where she was privileged to grow up around an incredibly strong arts community. In her formative years her mother was married to the film maker Godfrey Reggio whom had a strong influence on her ideas of a world out of balance. She studied photography with Walter Chappell and Willard Van Dyke, and later with installation artist Steve Barry, who gave her working and conceptual tools to work on themes of beauty and tragedy around environmental issues. She has shown extensively in Santa Fe, New York and the Midwest. She has multiple works in the permanent collection at the New Mexico Museum of Art and is currently working on a exhibition for The Harwood Museum of Art in Taos, New Mexico, opening in the spring of 2019.