Rock art is tough; simultaneously fragile — enduring and fragmenting, an embodied tension balancing ancient elements and human articulation.
Another dense layer arrives, dusty, drenching. A willful squeezing and welling. This now — politically, power driven jolts as actions by the new federal administration this month (January 2017) accelerate a lasting degradation of the natural environment as we think of it.
This is real as well for archaeological places including rock art.
In the short term, for example, management and information about public lands will be constricted with reduced oversight and protections. Long term? Pressure for further extraction: minerals, water, trees, gas, feed for livestock for meat. Disruption, pollution and poisoning as expediencies of demand, yield and profit. A logic of more and more people, all needing, desiring, taking. Global heating, and its attendant climate change, already inevitable, becomes more abstract with fault deflected to the Other.
This land, this earth, like carved expressions in stone, embodies tension — our winging abode of starry clarity and shrouded mystery.
Three photos below (Douglas Beauchamp September 2016)
Note: Oregon's Harney County is contiguous with Sheldon in Nevada.
— Petroglyph, BLM lands, Harney County; note lizard upper left
— Sheldon National Wildlife Refuge. Sage Grouse Wings sign; barrel left
— Sheldon National Wildlife Refuge. Sage Grouse collection barrel, each envelope a wing.