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Saguaro #3, 2022




"Contemporary observation and imaginary future visions" The Saguaro is a protected species of giant cactus endemic to Arizona's Sonoran Desert. Its growth is exceedingly slow, around the age of 75 it extends its first bizarre, vaguely anthropomorphic ramifications, living up to 200 years or more and exceeding 13 meters in height. Majestic and robust, this plant can adapt to adverse environments but is seriously threatened by the greed of a market that compromises its existence. The eagerness to own them as adornment for private gardens fuels an illegal trade that generates over fifteen billion euros a year. They are stolen because buyers are longing for mature, imposing specimens but obviously do not have the time to wait for their natural growth. Poaching in the animal and plant kingdom ranks fourth on the list of the most profitable illegal markets following arms, drugs and human trafficking. The red list drawn up by the IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature) classifies it as a vulnerable plant while a third of existing cacti are at risk of extinction. The Saguaro is threatened by climate change, by those who use it as target practice with rounds of bullets, and by a fortified wall, called "of shame" erected to prevent illegal migratory flows from South America. A barrier that cuts the nation of the Tohono O'odham (people of the desert) in two, violating and defacing those ancestral territories, theatres of annual celebrations, magical and secret rites. Clearly, human actions have a disastrous impact on the balance of the planet. The chromatically altered photographs intend to visually transpose this tragic scenario and perhaps project it towards an even more catastrophic future. The Saguaro however remain iconic, and grafted into these surreal environments seem even more radiant and magnetic, reminding us of their exceptional ability to develop sophisticated survival systems. These extraordinary symbols of resistance and regeneration are sacred plants to venerate as native peoples have done for centuries. From the series "Saguaro" - Archival Inkjet Giclée Print 16x24. Edition 1 of 12 + AP. Please contact us for additional sizes in the series. Allow 2 weeks for printing.

Artfare code
Available for pickup

photography | prints


24.00 x 16.00 x 0.25 in | 60.96 x 40.64 x 0.63 cm

Artwork location
Sham Hinchey and Marzia Messina
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