Greetings from the Pasture documents a live intervention I did in the late summer of 2011. Adjacent to one of the walking trails I enjoy near my Hudson Valley home is a pasture of grazing steer, also known as “grass-fed beef.”
I made signs displaying facts and statistics about animal agriculture, from the greenhouse gases such practices create, to the suffering of the animals as they’re led to slaughter. I then nailed the signs to the wooden fence posts adjoining the pasture.
To be clear, posting these signs, though adjacent to a public path, was trespassing. Thus, I was surprised that they lasted a full three days before they were taken down, presumably by the owner of the pasture.
Many people hike this path, so I thought if I could help even a handful connect the dots between these beautiful animals and “meat,” I’d be satisfied.
After completing the installation, I observed the path from a footbridge in the distance, and did indeed see many people slowing down to look at the signs.
With the photos taken to document this intervention, I created what looks like an old-fashioned souvenir fold-out postcard. The pretty, bucolic cover of this fold-out postcard stands in sharp contrast to the harsh realities of raising animals for food, mirroring the disconnect many have between sentient beings and what’s on their plate.