For the last two pieces assigned, I wanted to create something that was based on my previous piece titled Roots. I really enjoyed using charcoal and an ink wash on paper, so I thought it would be a good idea to carry this process over to two other drawings. I am also captivated by topics involving evolution versus creation, in which each of these pieces talk about. With the two additions to this series, I wanted to bring in another aspect to the concept, which involves the give and take between humanity and nature.
When I began researching for these two drawings, I was interested in primates and hominids in relation to homosapiens. Many primates have DNA that is from 96 to 99% similar to the DNA of humans. I find this to be very significant. Humanity overpowers any other species in existence on the planet and this power is abused more often than not. The resources in which the earth provides us are abused and many species are endangered. One of these species that captivates me is the gorilla, which resides in Africa. The gorilla is seen as a monstrous beast, but in reality, they are the most docile ape in existence. They are poached often and their population is dwindling quickly. It amazes me that an ape which shares 97% of its DNA with ours, is being so neglected. It is unbelievably similar to our own species, but people still take advantage of them. This greed saddens me.
Another aspect to these drawings is the willow branches. They represent the African Bush Willow, which provides a substance called Combretastatin, which aids in the tumor-cell killing power of radiation therapy as much as 500 times. This is tested on laboratory animals. Humanity is abusing animals for test and research facilities for the benefit of our own species. If this African Bush Willow becomes vastly used for medical purposes, it could be on its way out as a species as well.
For the first drawing, I drew one gorilla, which symbolizes the dwindling population. It has willow branches protruding from its fur because the gorilla also represents the earth and its resources available to humanity. The earth/gorilla/African Bush Willow is giving humanity resources that benefit our species, and this could be abused.
In the second drawing, I drew human hands, which represent greed. These hands are being given Combretastin by the willow branches, which are injecting it as though an IV would.