Dan Withey | Finite Bounty

Exploring New Animism:

New Animism is explored through the power of visual art. Drawing inspiration from indigenous customs and beliefs, as well as modern scientific knowledge, Withey emphasises the interconnectedness of all beings, both human and nonhuman, and their inherent value and aliveness. This exhibition serves as a platform for his personal exploration of becoming a New Animist and delves into the questions and answers that arise through the artistic process.

Through painted and printed works, I invite viewers to ponder the animist's perspective and its influence on our behaviour and relationship with the Earth. What does the world look like through the eyes of an animist? How does this awareness affect our actions and choices? By raising these questions, I aim to encourage a deeper connection with nature and a greater empathy toward our surroundings. 

At the core of this exhibition is the concept of the Web of Relationality, where humans, animals, plants, rocks, rivers, and clouds are seen as interconnected nonhuman persons within a complex network of relationships. Breaking down the boundaries between humans and nature, striving to challenge the othering of nature and human centralism, recognising that we are not superior to or separate from the natural world, but an integral part of it.

Furthermore, this exhibition focuses on the desire to adapt to the impending climate crisis. By embracing a new animistic framework, can we develop a more harmonious and sustainable way of living with the Earth? Through the power of visual art, is there potential of New Animism to address climate change, fostering a greater understanding of our surroundings, and inspiring positive action?

My exhibition seeks to activate a paradigm shift in our culture, promoting a conscientious way of engaging with the universe through new animism. By challenging existing beliefs, fostering a deeper connection with nature, and addressing the urgency of the Anthropocene, I hope to inspire positive change, even if it starts with just one person. Art, combined with research and reflection, has the power to ignite new discourse and contribute to a more sustainable future for all.