The exhibition at the McEachern Art Center focuses on nature conservation

The idea for this body of work came from a trip artist Alexa Kleinbard took to the mountains of northern Georgia.

MACON, Ga. — There’s a new set of artwork at the McEachern Art Center (The MAC) for the first Friday in September that has everything to do with nature.

“Storm Songs” is a series of paintings of plants and animals from Georgia and Florida. Artist Alexa Kleinbard addresses the effects of deforestation and pollution on our world and wildlife in this 15+ piece exhibition.

“I’m a big fan of Douglas Tallamy, the entomologist, who writes about bringing nature back by planting natives, protecting native plants, native animals, native insects, native people,” Kleinbard said.

The idea for this body of work originated from a trip Kleinbard took to the mountains of northern Georgia.

While in her cabin, she says she fell in love with the sounds of the native songbirds. Later, she worried about the loss of songbirds due to coastal deforestation.

“This body of work grew out of concern for wildlife in the forest as the forest and its natural habitats are fragmented, torn apart, cut down. Where are they going to find food for their babies, their chicks and where are they going to build their nests,” she said.

The entire exhibition runs for five years and is part of a larger body of work by Kleinbard where he focuses on the preservation of nature.

Rooms feature dramatic, brilliant greens against dark backdrops with birds, foxes, frogs and more trying to exist as fracking machines destroy the ground and trees and forest fires push them back.

Although primarily about the plight of animals and wildlife, there is also a message about the human struggles and years of social unrest the country has faced.

“Storm songs are kind of about what happens with big storms coming in and how that disrupts everything and as they come in, bigger rain events, but it’s also about social storms that we all go through,” Kleinbard said.

She says she wants people to walk away from her work with a renewed appreciation for nature and may consider planting more native plants and fostering a better environment for wildlife.

“I think we all have a choice to bring back nature, to try to renovate and to try to vote for people who want it,” Kleinbard said.

You can view the full body of work and meet Kleinbard at the free opening reception at the McEachern Art Center on Friday at 6 p.m.

The exhibition will be on view until November 4.

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