Featured Artist : Brin Levinson
Hailing from Portland, Oregon, artist Brin Levinson depicts muted haunted cityscapes and landscapes completely void of humanity. Other lifeforms and animals remain behind, sole survivors whose dominion is now the streets where people once walked. Fish float past street corners and rhinos browse hilltops past dilapidated water tanks. Obvious commentary on the ability for our natural world to survive and prevail, in spite of human exploitation.
From an Empty Kingdom interview:
The subject matter of your work harkens to a world where animals are very much a part of the urban landscape, but in many ways it seems like a landscape that has been retaken by nature. Do you think that mankind is capable of finding harmony with nature and coexisting with the natural environment? How do you envision that cooperation?
“Well, coexisting harmoniously isn’t really possible because there are seven billion humans on the planet.We’re completely self-serving and will eat everything in sight. The reality is that simply existing as a human is bad for the planet. Our current epoch is the Holocene extinction event in which species are dying off way faster than ever observed on the planet. People think the dinosaurs were the only global extinction period but right now it’s happening too. So, by painting animals taking over our abandoned cities, I’m painting a very optimistic idea. That’s why I think my paintings have a hopeful tone. This is the moment of calm after the storm when animals return to the land even though it’s been paved over. They’ve adapted to life on the pavement.”