About this piece:
Saguaro cactus, majestic symbol of the Sonoran Desert, are endangered by climate change, drought and competing invasive plant species. They form the foundation of an interdependent ecosystem that would be forever lost if conditions continue to decline. This limited-edition artist book uses Hedi Kyle’s Panorama structure to show two stories of these beloved desert icons. The first side is a visual timeline of the life of the Saguaro, which has an average life span of 150-175 years and can grow as high as a four-story building. Original photos document the cactus from delicate seeds, to monumental maturity, and then decay and death leaving behind a ribbed wooden skeleton. The second side features a poem written by the artist, celebrating the majesty and cultural touchstone that is this vital species and worrying over the most serious threats to the Saguaro, and indeed, the desert’s survival.
digital ink, paper
About the artist(s):
Lives and works in Tucson, Arizona, United States
Laura Russell is a photographer and book artist who creates hand-bound, limited-edition artist books that incorporate photographs of our urban landscape and tell a story about our culture and our communities. She has participated in national and international book arts and fine art exhibitions. Her books are collected by individual collectors and are in major collections at museums, libraries, universities and corporations. Laura is also the founder of 23 Sandy Gallery, a fine art gallery in Portland, 2007-2020, which is now owned and operated by Erin Mickelson.