China Poot Lagoon sounds exotic and displaced in an Alaskan landscape. And yet, true to its name, it is perfectly placed - beyond expectations.
Thirty years ago I kayaked to the cove with a friend. I recall the visual tapestry of sea life in the transparent waters beneath the canvas of the kayak - tide pools exploding with anemone, urchins, chiton, seaweed, kelp, mussels and a color combustion of starfish across the seabed. It was an image that nested in me, strong enough to make me want to return to that roust. It was the moment my friend realized she was pregnant.
I chose to print this image in B&W because things have changed. The floor of the lagoon is a silty brown, the tapestry shredded.
Relocation of sea otter from Prince William Sound after the Exxon Valdez Oil Spill has nurtured a biological incline. This mountain of survivors is shifting the ecology of the bay. During the week long artist residency I did not see a single starfish. No fireworks, not even a sparklers worth of presence. A disease called starfish wasting has extinguished the light.