A Happy Ending
The wild is done for—degraded, fragmented, shrunken. The animals that thrive are those that can live with humans in cities and suburbs. The most abundant species are our pets.
As resources diminish, wild animals face strong selective pressure to become tame. Those that do are named and invited into our households for the pleasure of interspecies companionship. A new mutualism is forged, as formerly wild creatures secure food, water, and shelter—survival itself—in exchange for domestication. No longer do species need go extinct. Instead they simply move in with us. All they have to do is let us pet and love them.
For “A Happy Ending,” I’ve imagined some of these interactions of the future, using my signature taxidermied animals as stand-ins for all the new pets. In each image, I interact with the animal, representing the human side of the relationship. I feed and water them and they play and hang out with me. It’s all chill. It’s the new normal: all civilized, all the time.