UTAH: The Beehive vs. Bears Ears


Mixed media on paper
26 x 40 inches

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1 in stock

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The beehive is Utah’s official state emblem and symbolizes the hard-working industry of its people. I am also using it as symbol of the swarm of tourists that almost overrun Utah’s many national parks and monuments. In 2016, President Obama created the Bears Ears National and Grand Staircase-Escalante Monuments. Bears Ears is named for a pair of tall buttes that resemble the top of a bear’s head peeking over a ridge. It is the first national monument ever created at the request of a coalition of Indigenous tribes. Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument spans across nearly one million acres of America’s public lands and contains three distinct units: Grand Staircase, Kaiparowits, and Escalante Canyon. Eleven months later, in early December of 2017, President Trump reduced the new monuments by 85 percent, an action that pleased Utah officials (the beehive) and some local residents. Deb Haaland, a former New Mexican Congresswoman and the first native American to head the Interior Department, is supporting the reinstatement of the original monument as revealed in two filings with the federal judge hearing the lawsuits that tribes and other groups filed to invalidate Trump’s order and to restore the size of the Grand Staircase-Escalante and Bears Ears national monuments.