A Postcard from the Badlands, South Dakota (For Santiago)


The Badlands, South Dakota 

I heard about the Badlands National Park Service in the news just last month - for tweeting about climate change - this was around the time of the inauguration - then deleting those tweets. It was interpreted as an act of defiance against the new administration, which, given the landscape of this park, feels particularly fitting.

It is a hot and bone dry desert landscape - the kind of place you emerge from parched and covered in white dust. I imagined Western movies being shot here, and hiking at night to the sounds of coyotes and a bright full moon. For the postcard, I wanted to depict the starkness of the landscape, so I used only pen. I didn't like how the clouds turned out so I cut out new clouds.

This postcard is for Santiago, a tango friend and fellow adventurer at heart! He had a rather vivid (and accurate) image of the Badlands, so I just built upon his words.  

About Santiago 

A recently transplanted Californian tango dancer, venturing into the hot and busy concrete jungle of New York. Among the highlights of his tango tenure, he's had the pleasure of subjecting Kening to the perils of dancing while being tipsy. Kening described it as somewhere between genius and a disaster. Still pondering at what to make of that.

Why The Badlands

I have not idea what the Badlands are, and don't think I can even picture what South Dakota is like. In my sheer ignorance, I imagine a barren and dry place, with crows festering on carcasses of long dead animals. Maybe even a corpse from an unsolved crime. It is the Badlands after all!