My work is influenced by romantic lifestyles of today and a bygone era. I draw on imagery from nautical folklore of antiquity or from Classic American iconography. Fishing, surfing and sailing, have instilled in me a deep appreciation for the ocean and all that revolves in and around this environment. I travel with these tools simply to gain perspective through raw experience. These experiences are projected throughout my prints and sculptures. I render the ocean with a stylized interpretation that is both honest and idealized simultaneously.
I utilize an old-world aesthetic to honor its abundance of craftsmanship where there is now an excess of disposable goods. Working in traditional media such as Bronze, Lithography, and Woodcuts allows me to create multiple originals as opposed to synthetic recreations. I reclaim discarded raw materials such as wood, metal, or paper giving these items purpose once again. With my art, I aim to perpetuate a public appreciation for such practices and further their integral role in our society.
Lucas Elmer is a California-based artist living and working in Santa Cruz, CA. After receiving his BA from the University of California Santa Cruz in 2011 he continues to work in the Foundry and Print Studio there as a Staff Research Associate.
In a Can: Un Manifesto de Sardinista
“Save the products of the land — Eat more fish, they feed themselves” -United States Food Administration, 1917
Why are there no more Sardines canned in the U.S.? Not because we ate ‘em all.
The American taste changed. The last hold-out cannery was Stinson Seafood in Gouldsboro, Maine which closed down in 2010. Instead of packing Sardines for human consumption now, we use them to fatten up bigger fish in ocean pens. Experts say it takes at least 7 lbs. of Sardines to produce 1 lb. of Tuna. This seems to me, a huge waste of fish.
Sardines in a can were at one time an integral part of the average American lunchbox. Now we have canned tuna instead. Is it because of the skin and bones or is it the historical association with the lower class?
“Remember when I used to eat sardines for dinner” -Notorious B.I.G.
Sardines, to me are a timeless, nutritious, and terribly under-rated protein that should be reconsidered. Especially, in a time of such wasteful consumerism we should strive to simplify and localize our food production. Eat lower on the food chain. Eat local Fish.
“Pull your own weight. Hook your own bait” -Lucas Elmer
If none of this makes any sense to you, what about the pure and simple aesthetics of a sleek manufactured can o’ fish? A picnic, packed tight in your bag, ready to go anywhere, anytime. Whether you’re on the road, on the rails, or the high seas, there is something beautiful to be seen in a can of Sardines.