Monarch by James Cook, 1990, oil canvas, 84" X 68"
On permanent display at Joel D. Valdez Main Library.
Presented by the Friends of the Tucson-Pima Library with purchase funds provided by the Helen Hintz Cornerstone Fund. With special thanks to the Davis-Dominguez Gallery which represents the artist.
"Although painted in my studio here in Tucson, Monarch is based on something I experienced in Rocky Mountain National Park. A dam had burst above the present site of these falls, sending a wall of water down through the canyon and into the town below. When visiting the location later I was struck, not just by the visible destruction, but also by the power of nature to change and renew the landscape. In this case, the flood waters had carried boulders and debris to the mouth of the canyon where they formed a natural dam, a new lake, and this fresh cascade with water crashing over the stream tossed rocks. Back home again, the challenge I set myself on this canvas was not to imitate nature directly, as in a color picture-postcard, but to convey something of the surging energy, terrifying power, and breath-taking beauty I had seen and felt on the spot." --Jim Cook