Plants have always been a favorite subject of mine, to photograph or write about, to endeavor to keep alive and coax into thriving. I have a tattoo of a flower on my arm even.
Their symbology, in the language of the visual, the meanings imparted through different usages, has further always captivated my imagination, in a multitude of ways. One passage which stayed with me since adolescence was a certain line in Hamlet about an ‘unweeded garden gone to seed’. Juxtaposing that with the alternative, of flourishing, verdant, lovingly maintained landscapes, restored wastelands anticipated when the Fisher King finally transmits his holy Grail, Arthur rises again, Merlin is freed from his arboreal prison, all of these stories and vested meanings within them I find so enchanting, of such extraordinary interest, that I pay especial attention and invest particular energy in documenting striking examples in nature which fit into their rich and storied traditions and frameworks.
Bees are a vital component of all such systems, as the protectors and conveyors, who perform that critical step of caretaking and promoting fecund proliferation of plant life, fertilizing and pollinating, facilitating and enabling reproduction. When their existence is jeopardized, bee numbers dwindle, so all life and growth on this planet become threatened.
Happening upon this scene and composing the above photo, I was reminded and hoped to subtly gesture towards how important bees are, the critical foundational purposes they fulfill in propping up our entire ecosystem, to draw attention to their recent plight and foster awareness of the primacy of ensuring different species’ preservations. If not for the benefit of the insects themselves, or to cultivate the flowers they steward, for that next generation of people, not to mention our own.
To me, these flowers looked like they were yearning for connection. Reaching out almost…
Jerome Berglund graduated from the cinema-television production program at the University of Southern California, and has spent much of his career working in television and photography. He has had photographs published and awarded in local papers and last year staged an exhibition in the Twin Cities area which included a residency of several months at a local community center. The most recent show featuring his pictures, at the Pause Gallery in New York, opened in early December.