Nature is ever changing. Never more so than today. Yet the increasingly ephemeral state of our remaining wild places can be documented with ever more enduring art techniques. The digital format, with its archival potential, provides the artist a way to preserve not only a sublime moment in the woods, but also serves as a voice for those same wild places that no longer exist.
Drew Harkey began recording these landscapes as an wildland archaeologist. At first, his photography was unintentional; he just snapped shots as a way to frame something he sensed from the forest. But over time he realized that his images were really the only way to return — because in Florida the archaeologist is called to make sure a road, industrial park or housing development can move forward. After he leaves, the bulldozers follow.
Today, Harkey documents places endangered and preserved, hoping to capture the same essence found in both — hoping to demonstrate the value of all wild places regardless their legislated fate. His work, then, is an epitaph, a plea and a celebration. And, most especially, an opportunity to share with others those exceptional moments when he has witnessed Nature as artist.