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"Totem # 4: Stacked Burrowing Owls"
24 x 12"
Acrylic on Cradled Board2017
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This is the fourth in my ongoing “Totem” series. Modern reinterpretations of the Native American Totem Poles of the Pacific Northwest, these pieces offer impossible arrangements of common animals and birds. Isolated from their natural environments and portrayed in a whimsical, tension-filled, and surreal context, the viewer is challenged to reconsider the subjects in a new light. Native Americans traditionally used animals as potent symbols for their own human talents, frailties, fears, and desires, and despite the distance we have placed between ourselves and the natural world today, animals still play just as significant a role in our daily lives, from logos to add campaigns. These pieces ask the viewer to explore what wildlife means in today’s world, to consider the fragile balance we strike in our own lives between man and beast, and to ponder the plight of a natural world teetering on collapse.
Though burrowing owls are not yet listed as endangered, they are a species of concern due to rapidly declining numbers. I am fortunate to live within walking distance of an active burrowing owl colony, and I have observed firsthand how fragile their survival can be. They rely on ground squirrels to dig their burrows, so commonly accepted and entirely legal squirrel abatement programs can have a devastating effect on the owls’ chances for survival. Protecting these owls is, one might say, a balancing act!
Welcome to the online home for artwork by Andrew Denman, a California –based, internationally recognized, award-winning contemporary wildlife artist. Denman primarily paints wildlife and animal subjects in a unique, hallmark style combining hyper-realism with stylization and abstraction. His dynamic and original acrylic paintings can be found in museum collections on two continents and in numerous private collections in the USA and abroad. His clear voice, unique vision, and commitment to constant artistic experimentation have positioned him on the forefront of an artistic vanguard of the best contemporary wildlife and animal painters working today.
All artwork and text featured on this page and throughout this website is protected by international copyright laws. Use of these images or text is prohibited without the express written permission of Andrew Denman.