Scorched Earth, 2017
In 2009, Julie and Kristen Gautier-Downes lost their childhood home in a sudden, early-season brushfire in Santa Barbara, California. Though Kristen works in painting, and Julie works in both photography and installation, their creative interests center around making sense of this intense and emotional event that took away everything they owned.
Separately, each has each grappled with topics of impermanence, destruction, fire, home, and the lasting marks humans have made on the landscape in their respective artistic practices. These digital composites and installations bring together the sisters’ shared history of environmental disaster by combining their different approaches to processing a major loss.
Scorched Earth features collaborative works made by twin sisters, Julie and Kristen Gautier-Downes. The works exhibited are a selection of digital composites and installations which seek to make sense of the sisters’ shared trauma. The works exhibited discuss impermanence, destruction, fire, home, and the lasting marks humans have made on the landscape.