2019. Edition of 1072
23.5" x 20.5” (59.7 x 52cm)
Giclee with silkscreen and dimensional enhancements
310 g/m² 100% cotton-rag paper
Signed and numbered in pencil
Just in time for butterfly season, Aurelians is now available as a signed and numbered limited edition of giclée prints. The term Aurelian refers to someone who is interested in butterflies. It also refers to Aurelian, the Roman Emperor from 270 - 275 AD, who ascended to the throne through the military from humble beginnings. Therefore, the use of the term may come from the idea that great things can emerge from lowly or modest sources, like how the butterfly emerges from a chrysalis after beginning life as a caterpillar. The etymology of Aurelian is also related to aureolus, which means golden, or golden in nature. So, the three young girls in Aurelians are surrounded by a yellow summer sky punctuated by golden daytime stars. They chase butterflies as part of a childhood ritual, the summers fleeting and fading away as they transform into adults. In fact, I remember that there used to be many more insects around when I was a child growing up and playing in the woods. Insects would constantly invade the house and backyard, and the spring and summer would bring swarms of fireflies and bees. Now, I don’t see as many bugs around. So it comes as no surprise that a recent report says that 40% of the world’s population of insects are in decline. However, Los Angeles recently experienced an unusually massive butterfly migration due to the heavy rains. Swarms of butterflies flew through Los Angeles and over the freeways as they journeyed up to northern California. This particular species of butterfly is called the Painted Lady, and I thought of the Aurelians, trying to capture the butterflies in the ephemeral moments of their youth.