TO THE OCEAN FIELDS OF LEVIATHIAN

On Earth, blue whales are the largest mammals ever. Fewer and fewer are remaining in world oceans, boding extinction. As Research Collaborator of Smithsonian, I am drawing behemoth whale bones, pioneering artist/scientist exhibition of monumental scale. The balance of intuitive creativity and reasoned science is direly needful in awakening humanity to the plight of these leviathans, with whom we merely share existence.


Images have power beyond words to evoke passion, understanding, and action.


Infusing precise, objective research with artistic dynamics of boundless awe advances understanding in these urgent times, when the ignorance of our species blisslessly threatens all of life on Earth.

 

 

PROJECT PLAN


My artistic plan is to travel to Arlington, Virginia, to the Smithsonian Support Facility of the National Museum of Natural History, as well as to Los Angeles County Museum of Natural History, and American Museum of Natural History in New York, configuring huge drawings derived of whale relics. I must venture to these sites because many bones are very large and heavy, most of them unable to be moved from the museums.


To enhance my envisioning of the actual relics of these watery leviathans I will also accompany whale researchers on more ocean-going expeditions to their vast fields on the high seas, as I have been doing the last ten years. I will record in pencil and ink what I observe on these expeditions, focussing on the whales. Though I yearn in the tradition of Agate, Peale and Gould, and other consummate draftsmen, artistically uplifting the natural world around them in the annals of scientific exploration, my own work will be purely from an artistic vantage. Edwards Park, of The Smithsonian magazine, when interviewing me for his column, “Around The Mall and Beyond”, in 1986, (Vol.17 #5) was keen about this whale project. Please also see February, 1998, issue of the same magazine for “The Beauty of Bare Bones”, by editor Diane M. Bolz.


We must look into nature, not merely at nature.

 

WHALES OF TAILS


For over a decade, I have been uniquely appointed a Research Collaborator of Smithsonian Institution, in association with Dr. James G. Mead, Curator of Marine Mammals, National Museum of Natural History.


Working as an artist I determine, in this evolving project titled “WHALES OF TAILS”, to draw monumental configurations derived of the relics from many of the great leviathans of world oceans, in order to bring more global attention to the ongoing plight of the whales. To draw these huge images, I have secured permission for loans of smaller whale bones from American Museum of Natural History and the Los Angeles County Museum of Natural History.
From the field studies accompanying this statement, some sense of the final drawings can be imagined. Each huge drawing, measuring around eleven feet high by four to five feet wide, will entail the relics of whales.


In order to do the research and the extensive work involved for the drawings and the subsequent travelling exhibition, I need financial backers---both visionary individuals, and corporate endowment, people who could match stride with this colossal adventure. As in no other historic time, artists must now join in with the scientific community, globally, on behalf of the marine giants, the whales of world oceans who are most certainly threatened, due to our human ignorance and greed.

 

For further information about participating with me in this project, please contact me. gendron@gendronjensen.com

The above pen and ink drawings are field studies derived of the bones of whales.
These are from the collection of the artist and are not for sale.