Art | Sub-Antarctic Biocultural Conservation Program


The Omora Ethnobotanical Park takes interdisciplinary action through science, philosophy, and art. Artists, students of all ages, and teachers create paintings, songs, and films to visually communicate their experiences with the culture and nature of the region. In this way, conservation efforts extend boundaries that might not otherwise exist. Ms. Ximena Arango has played a very important role in communicating science through art. During various art exhibitions, children from the local school in Puerto Williams have displayed their perceptions of the "Miniature Forest" using a wide range of materials and resources. Undergraduate UNT student Amanda Dunnavant created the below artwork after her visit to the Cape Horn Biosphere Reserve in the winter 2006-2007 course

This house along the walk from the town of Puerto Williams to the Omora Ethnobotanical Park, raises questions of past lives with every footed passing: Who lived here and how did they work the land around them? What of that knowledge is, like the structure itself, also abandoned? Underneath this place, where another home once rested, what indigenous practices occurred that are now lost or so anxiously waiting to be rekindled?

The graceful motion of kelp lying on the shore of the Beagle Channel whispers of understanding…The connection between all things beautiful and therefore powerful and always important is irresistibly portrayed in only a closer glance.

The colors along the trek up the Dientes…Grassy with many trees- green leaves, brown roots. A bright burst from a Chauro berry or a purpley-red fern. Then the tree line. Rocks of brown, slate grey. And colorful lichens and mosses peeping here and there. White of snow near the peaks. Colors that vibrate.

Julia shows us the final stage of preparing empanadas after catching limpets. The whole process was a gift: from Julia to us, from one culture to another, past to present, and from the living ocean to the living people.

Fishing boats and now ghostly Yahgan canoes navigate the same treacherous southern waters…The Sea with its wave, wipes away concept of past/present, concept of categorical labeling, and especially the false concept of dominion over a tamable nature.