Considered one of the 40 wonders of the world, The Pando is a 106-acre forest of genetically identical, male Aspen trees that reproduce asexually through the root system. As a result of climate change and other disruptions, the trees are experiencing a failure to thrive. Since the forest lacks genetic diversity, it relies on diversity across ages to ensure a flourishing, healthy forest.
The Magnificent Ladies of the Pando are artist Lori Leachman’s tribute to The Pando Forest.
In her words, “They are the complement to the male reality. They are the ladies that will save the day and help repair the forest.”
Leachman's exhibition, which includes large scale oil paintings and metal sculpture replicas of the Pando Forest, starts Sunday at the Kenan Center with an opening reception from 2 to 4 p.m.
“The Ladies of the Pando that you see here are dancing and undulating in all manner of daylight and season,” says Leachman. “They are dressed (with leaves) and undressed, alone and in groups. They are a tribute to the raw beauty and wonder to found in nature. They are magnificent in their gnarly, exotic ‘skin.’ They are rushing to our rescue.”
To facilitate that rescue, 5% of all sales of Leachman's works will be donated to the Western Aspen Alliance, a non-profit facilitating effective and appropriate management of Aspen ecosystems in western North America.
The exhibition will be on view from through October 10 at Kenan House Gallery. The gallery is open from noon to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday and 2 to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday; admission is free of charge. (The gallery is closed Sept. 4 through Sept. 6, Sept. 25 and Oct. 2.) Call 433-2617 to schedule a visit. For more information, visit www.kenancenter.org.