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Environmental Crisis in the Rocky Mountain Region & Artist’s Books as the Solution Open Access

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The Rocky Mountain region of the United States has been a stopping point and destination for many people; pioneers and tourists alike. The Rocky Mountains were a major obstacle; harsh winters, and unpredictable weather in the summer made crossing them incredibly dangerous. These hurdles made many pioneer families abandon their journey west and settle in the front range, so began the colonization of the West. Since then the region has seen many changes from an influx of population in Colorado, Oil Pipelines running through Montana, and Hydraulic Fracturing in Wyoming. Many agencies are fighting to counter the adverse effects of these issues, such as The Nature Conservancy, but they cannot solve these problems on their own. This paper argues that art can be a catalyst for social change and that artists’ books offer a way to educate and advocate for the protection of our natural areas. The work of John Risseeuw, Ilse Schreidber-Noll, and Kathy Hettinga will serve as examples of rare book artist whom are working with art as activism. The paper will go onto to argue that rare books are not suitable for activism and that the democratic multiple is the most effective book form for activism.

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