How do you begin to understand the inextricable link between humans and the environment? Perhaps by exploring staged spaces that blur the lines between nature and artifice. Several current and upcoming exhibitions feature works that examine our relationship to the world around us by bringing a new kind of sensorial awareness to visitors.
There must be something in the atmosphere.
At the Zadok Gallery in Miami, artist Seon Ghi Bahk constructed intricate configurations of charcoal bits with nylon string. The various dematerialized sculptures blur the line between nature and civilization. Their shattered state implies that even the longest lasting structures of society are destined to disappear and be reincorporated into the natural order.
While attention is focused on Brazil for the World Cup, Henrique Oliveira configured a large-scale wooden maze called Transarquitetônica at the Museum of Contemporary Art at the University of São Paulo. Although the artist cites socioeconomic issues as the conceptual catalyst, these interwoven tunnels form a new kind of environment that allows you to experience a space made from scrap wood that makes you feel as small as an insect.
Our complicated relationship with consumption and its effects are brought to the forefront in a second maze, this one made of plastic. A group of activists called Luzinterruptus created a striking visual in Labyrinth of Plastic Waste to demonstrate “poetically” the amount of plastic waste consumed daily.
Unlike the three previous artists, Barry Underwood captures his work via film. To instill an environmental awareness, he invents supernatural fables in different settings. He creates discord with these glowing electric landscapes, visualizing the dangers and beauty of the natural world. Underwood just presented a solo featuring this series at Sous Les Etoiles Gallery, New York.
Light plays an important role in these works that engage the senses. Spencer Finch will unveil A Certain Slant of Light at the Morgan Library & Museum. This site-specific piece is made of 365 squares of color that are situated to reflect the seasons and the passing of time. The red squares in particular are calculated so that they take turns catching the sun at noon.
Take a look at these installations and photographs to reconnect with your environment. Perhaps these unnatural wonders will inspire a new awareness, a new attention to the spaces that envelope you.