(2007) Belshe & Prown - This installation consists of nearly 600 paper tie tags printed with images of grasshoppers, locust and cicadas. These are paired with words that relate to these ubiquitous insects. The tags are used to create a visual swarm on tree branches, fences etc. These words and images reveal, in their complexity and contradiction, a web of meaning that informs our relationship with this common insect. Topics of agriculture, environment, history and more are referenced in this installation.
“Grasshoppers play an important role in North American grassland ecosystems, serving as food for wildlife and contributing to nutrient cycling. However, periodic grasshopper outbreaks on rangeland can result in competition with other herbivores for vegetation and lead to grasshopper dispersal into crops. Of the 400 species of grasshoppers in the Western United States, fewer than 2 dozen are capable of causing significant economic damage to crops and forage.