THE EARTH IS OUR MOTHER

There has been so much suffering in the world these last few days. Continued police brutality, climate change, the ongoing systemic oppression of people of color; the onslaught of news has been overwhelming. What can we do to create the world that we want? How can we heal our social and ecological communities? In what ways can we ensure that everyone has the right to a peaceful life? 

At Loam, we consider the interconnectedness of all things a call to action. And we've found incredible hope and a reinvigorated desire to fight from our younger readers, who write in regularly to share their vision of a better world. The above painting was created by Vrinda M. Suresh. Just 16, Vrinda's artist manifesto, below, is evidence that the next generation cares deeply about building alternative ways of being. In the wake of devastation, Vrinda's work is a reminder that we must take care of one another and our environment. 

The title is a reference to a chant which I learnt as a child. The words continue on: The Earth is our Mother, We must take care of her. The chant circles back finally to end with: The Earth is our Mother, She will take care of us. 

I felt it was an appropriate title for this piece, where our planet, decapitated, is floating away irrevocably into the vast black emptiness of space. The earth is our home and provides us with everything necessary for life to continue, but we need to take care of her, so that she may ultimately take care of us. This is what I want to convey through this piece.

Although my medium of choice is often acrylic paints, I also work with color pencil and pastels. This picture was created using pastels and charcoal. My work may not be typical pretty nature pictures, but I hope it grabs the attention of people and creates a sense of urgency surrounding environmental issues.

I am just finishing up my junior year in high school in Fremont, and am an avid environmentalist. I am involved in several environmental organizations and causes including heading a Greenpeace chapter, working at local wildlife refuges to reclaim and restore habitat, rehabilitating orphaned and injured animals at a wildlife hospital, and using art to express my deep discontent regarding the state of our world today. I also maintain a Café Press storefront featuring more environmental graphics and art, to both highlight and raise money for environmental causes.