A Rocha’s first artist in residence

A Rocha’s founders, Peter and Miranda Harris, first met artist Heidy Sumei Chuang in 2015 at the mission house where they typically stay when visiting A Rocha donors in New York. As she and Miranda talked, it became clear they shared many insights about the beauty of creation, celebrated both in painting and in practical conservation. ‘As we frequently work in challenging places and times, that celebration becomes all the more important, and the gift that artists have of giving creation voice through all kinds of media becomes an ever more vital ministry,’ explains Peter. Funding and planning followed and then Heidy spent two months at Les Courmettes, A Rocha France’s centre in the hills behind Nice, as the first artist in residence. We trust this will bring A Rocha’s work and love for creation to an entirely new audience in a completely new way.

Heidy reflects on her ‘Butterfly Project’: ‘A Rocha has given me new insight into what it means to care passionately for the earth. This now informs my art with a profound respect for the earth and with a renewed love for creation. Wonder is what I felt as I painted these beautiful creatures. In these initial watercolours, I wanted to express the quality of light and the distinctive movement when a butterfly first spreads its wings.

‘The images I have worked with will be developed further through imagination and memory in the studio, and will culminate in a series of large-scale works to be exhibited in New York City in the spring of 2018. This work is made in part to help raise awareness and visibility of A Rocha’s mission in the USA. As an artist, I feel the importance of highlighting A Rocha’s vision, and I am grateful to be a part of it. I believe this is a unique time in history, one in which we can tremendously affect the earth’s restoration. A Rocha’s work demonstrates how informed care of our world honors the Creator and enables the flourishing of both the natural world and human communities.’

Butterfly, by Heidy Chuang

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