Gold Leaf on watercolor paper
11 x 15 inches
WORMWOOD FOREST/RED FOREST
An Excerpt from
SOME NOTES TOWARD PLANTS
The ring was six miles wide. The acrid cloud hovered for days, unloading radioactive dust all over the pines. Green quickly turned ginger-brown. All of the trees were bulldozed, heaved away to waste graveyards, dug hastily miles away.
Some animals died too, each at its own speed. Others stopped reproducing.
After the evacuation, different animals from other areas moved in, escaping human disturbance, finding quiet. (There are no biological sensors for radiation.) Endangered horses were unleashed in the area. An experiment. A chance.
Now birds fly in and out of the Reactor, nesting their eggs inside the “Sarcophagus” lid.
All of these animals have flourished—the birds, the horses. A bear’s footprints, not seen in the area for centuries, have been spotted. All have prospered, except one. Just one. A mouse with cancer. It didn’t make it.
But I wanted to tell you about the plants and trees. Crazy mutations have happened—there are more plant species than ever. Only these plants are all bigger. Taller. Some greener.
Some trees are starting to grow back, but their branches do not reach towards the sun. They twist downwards, earthbound, burying themselves.
Ginny Cook received her BA in Art History from Emory University in 2000 and her MFA in Photography and Media from the California Institute of the Arts in 2005. Most recently her work was included in Complicity: Contemporary Photography and the Matter of Sculpture, at Rena Bransten Gallery (San Francisco) and Light & Wire at Circus Gallery (Los Angeles). Her work has also been exhibited at LAX International Airport (Los Angeles), Steven Wolf Fine Arts (San Francisco), AndrewShire Gallery (Los Angeles), the 2004 Festival Universal de Sonido, Imagen y Ondas Nuevas (San Jose, Costa Rica), South La Brea Gallery (Los Angeles), Armory Center for the Arts (Los Angeles), and the National Center for the Arts (CENAR) (San Salvador, El Salvador), among others. She lives and works in Los Angeles.