Artist's statement -
A friend once told me that if I was bored with something, or uninspired, I just needed to get into it more deeply. That perfectly described my relationship with the desert. I had hiked, biked, climbed, flown over, and filmed almost every part of it but I hadn't gone deeper.
That changed a year ago when I filmed a couple as they explored an abandoned gold mine east of Twentynine Palms. The experience of going deep into the Earth, of being completely immersed far inside of it, really opened my eyes.
Near the Salton Sea I picked up a round piece of sandstone that had broken open. A geologist who examined it told me that the stone's yellow interior was likely arsenic - a precipitate formed thousands of years ago at the bottom of a dying sea.
Here was physical evidence that other inland seas existed before the Salton Sea. The most recent - Lake Cahuilla, supported thousands of Native Americans. I've found piles of mussel shells deposited by these people many miles away from of the current shoreline, which indicated just how large the previous sea was.
My advice for explorers is to invest some time so that you may come to a deeper understanding of the things you encounter. Things which seem common at first glance may in fact reveal a deeper story - the natural history of a place.
My "Photographic survey of the Colorado Desert" is a collection of forty items I've found over the past year. I hope these photographs bring you closer to our natural environment, so that you can feel your physical and spiritual connection with it.
Robert Marcos, photographer
Copyright 2018 Robert Marcos Studios
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