Ants in Process - Collaborative prints May 2012 -present

  With the challenges presented to all of us in this twenty-first century, artists, so often on the forefront of experimentation, are reexamining the role of artist in society. For so long, the importance of artist as individual has dominated the visual arts.  Now other ways of working are being considered including the long and widespread tradition of collaboration. Our group of four women artists with a background primarily in printmaking, but also painting and the book arts, has decided to work cooperatively on a project about ants. Our group is diverse in age and experience.
     Ants, which make up 15-25% of all terrestrial animal biomass, have been extensively studied, especially recently by the two biologists Bert Holldobler and Edward O. Wilson. They have applied the term Superorganism to ant colonies, seeing that the success of the species depends on   its cooperative behavior. With ants, it is more meaningful to consider that colony as the organism, rather than the individual ant.  While usually considered a nuisance from a human point of view, a closer look by biologists has allowed us to see a fascinating, vibrant and successful society with much to teach our own species. What the ants have been doing for so long is parallel to our group’s goals, so it was easy to choose them as our subject.  -Vivien Russe, Ant Girl

                                             Dorothy Schwartz's ant woodblock

                                       Ant Girls   Work Session 2 - Ideas