Statement Crime Against Nature, a series and book by artist Gwenn Seemel, exposes the true diversity of natural behaviors. With a collection of colorful paintings of animals, Seemel breaks from her exclusive commitment to the genre of portraiture to reveal a very personal struggle and to connect it with the struggle of all those who are marginalized by society’s myths about gender.
What do single moms, stay-at-home dads, professionals who happen to be women, men who like to dress colorfully, infertile people, and homosexuals have in common? They’re often viewed by society as sad, bad, and even a little suspicious. Those judgments all stem originally from one idea: that females are naturally passive and more caring, and males are naturally aggressive and more intelligent. It’s an idea that is deeply embedded in our social system and dictates much of our behavior. It’s also an idea that has nothing to do with what is actually going on in nature.
Bio Seemel is a full-time artist who writes and creates videos in English and in French for her award-winning blog about her work, portraiture, the business of art, free culture, feminism, and her struggle with endometriosis. She is the recipient of grants from the Regional Arts and Culture Council, the Oregon Arts Commission, the Celebration Foundation, the Haven Foundation, Change Inc, and Artists’ Fellowship Inc. Her work has been written about by the prominent portraiture scholar Dr. Richard Brilliant and it is in the collection of the Hallie Ford Museum of Art.