In my recent work, The Tree Museum, I present images of elm trees and American chestnut trees lost to blight, recording loss in the natural world caused by human activities. In a related project, Traces, I make cyanotype prints from an ongoing archive of botanical drawings in which I record the natural, yearly cycle of the wildflowers growing on the Greek Island of Kea, and also, as it turns out, the gradual loss of fauna in this fragile island ecosystem. My aim in these two projects is to suggest an imagined future (artist as quasi scientist, or science fiction writer, or soothsayer). Perhaps we are viewing a display in a natural history museum of the not so distant future, memorializing loss by presenting trace images of these now extinct plants.
Judith Allen-Efstathiou’s family goes back 14 generations in Maine. The last five generations of women have been artists; three generations graduated from The School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (SMFA). After Judith’s SMFA graduation she was awarded a traveling fellowship from the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston for one year of international travel; she ended up stretching that year into a three-decade stay in Athens, Greece. In 1999 she began her six-months-in-Portland-six-months-in-Athens life. It’s a complicated life, balancing duel citizenship, two languages and two cultures. Her artwork is informed by her negotiations between these two vastly different worlds. She exhibits her work in both the USA and in Greece, and has been included in many international printmaking biennials throughout the world. Her work is included in the publication Maine Printmaking 1800-2005: The Imprint of Place by David P. Becker (2006)