Conservation practice

The most important relationship in my life has always been between me and land. I have dedicated my life to my conservation work.

I was diagnosed with O.C.D. when I was 5. My life was cosumed by a constant fear of death which could only be prevented by repetitiously performing irrational rituals. One of my earliest memories is sitting in my kindergarten classroom painfully watching blood run from the cracking in my skin down my hands red and inflamed from washing my hands for hours a day.

The only time I felt any relief from my problems was when I was in the woods. In any patch of dirt and timber I felt the same sensation of comfort and connection one feels from the love of a loyal dog. Amongst the forest’s flora and fauna, I felt companionship, and found a community I felt a part of.

As I grew older my mental health improved. I now look back at that time through a positive lens. I see how the experience helped shaped my character, inspired a lifelong friendship with the earth, and instilled within me a since of duty, to serve and be a voice for a land that cannot speak.

Land Management 

For years I worked as an arborist and Park Ranger for U.S. Fish & Wildlife. It was my job to manage wild spaces and to protect the biodiversity within them from the impacts of pollution and anthropogenic climate change. In each location I would work the land to foster the growth of native species and mitigate the spread of invasive species. This allowed the habitat to flourish in an equitable, healthy, ecosystem.

My conservation-based practice addresses the same threats to the environment and implores the same techniques I used in the field to aqueous materials and design my sculptures and installations.

I maintain the grounds of numerous long term outdoor installations that span 15 acres of wild forest. The intention behind these projects is to improve the bottom-up productivity of the local ecosystem through land management and providing structural resources for local wildlife.

Like an artificial reef, my sculpture creates an infrastructure that stimulates animal activity. Birds, insects, and small mammals are drawn to the safety of the sculpture’s cavernous spaces and lofted perches. Structures likes this dramatically improve the health of the local ecology and helps facility healthy animal populations. Both are critical to protecting and preserving biodiversity.

Sustainable Materials

I collect all of the materials for my work directly from the landscape. I harvest and process all of the wood in my work. I only use storm damaged timber, invasive species, or the wood that results from beneficial forestry applications such as: crown reductions, thinning under brush, and removing standing dead wood. Working in this manner provides all of the material needed for my art while simultaneously reducing future damages to woodland areas from severe storms and forest fires.

Logging wood in this fashion is sustainable and provides a quality material that is significantly more ecologically friendly and has a smaller carbon footprint than any commercially available wood product.

Littered detritus gains a positive function as advantageous birds build nests inside the found objects and pollinators species are drawn to the brightly colored commercial products. Keen for a feed, the activity of the small animals attracts larger game, further up the food chain. This animal interaction is an essential part of any healthy habitat.

Community Outreach

Building empathetic relationships between the public and environment is an essential for conserving the health of the planet. There is no difference between environmental and societal issues. The health of the planet and society are intrinsically linked. An unhealthy land yields an unhealthy people. In addition to engaging the public in a conversation about conservation these projects illustrate an important concept that is becoming less conceivable in our modern society. The work shows a human, driven by a human behavior; creativity, can be a beneficial participant within an ecosystem.

securing a Sassafras sapling on a project grounds in Tivoli, NY

this piece was made from two dead oak trees and pleothora of collected litter

an invasive Buckthorn sapling used as a lashing within a scultpture

Support for Vulnerable forests and Families

Due to the compendious impact climate change has on all living creatures, Max Bard 911 E.S.S. takes a holistic approach to addressing climate injustice by providing meaningful support for the people and places who sufferer most from the inequities brought about through climate change.

Learn More about Max Bard 911 E.S.S

Free educational events

I host a variety of educational events that focus on providing information that can empower youth, build self-confidence, and promote art as a positive outlet for self-expression and social change.

Inquire about event
photo of event at Kennedy Children's Center, Harlem ,NY

Kennedy Children's Center Harlem, NY