“Nature Boy, Revisited”
Nature meets ersatz nature, and an unsettling, mutant identity is the upshot. Such is Drummond’s MO. For Drummond, iconography of nature becomes both a topic of concern and a post-modernist plaything. The artist deals, coyly and concurrently, with actual nature, sentimental imagery of nature, and our genuinely conflicted relationship with the natural world, when even the most eco-conscious among us grapple with hypocrisy.
Drummond’s scattershot text cascades diagonally down the wall, and fittingly grows evermore dour as it descends, moving from a dream of nature to a realization of the prevalence of rubbish and pollution. It ends with the fatalistic line, “I wondered how we might stop its waters being polluted upstream, though I didn’t really think we could.” While there are certain serious, cautionary aspects to Drummond’s messages, not only the specific text but also the whole conceptual approach to his art, the cheeky and fragmentary quality of his presentation keeps it from being merely glum or preachy eco-art. In a way, his art brings awareness to the barriers and misconceptions we encounter while trying to come to grips with the incredible tension between humanity and its habitat.
In another way, though, he’s a deft juggler of light and dark, a deadpan entertainer with a half-serious sermon to deliver.