For an idea of the desert: Nora Jean Petersen & Fay Ray
curated by Gladys-Katherina Hernando
August 31, 2013
It is a vast nature. Sands of former lakes and rivers. A mysterious eternity, the definitions of this arid place are almost unfathomable. Layers build to form new shapes. Entropy and erosion. They reveal time in their imprint, perhaps it was only a moment.
From this distance to the city, surrounded by the warm summer air, let the landscape shore up a temporary dislocation in favor of discovery. Be here now.
A forced perspective finds you, a mirror image recording a landscape, to create an ideal position of vision from a single vantage point. Like a hallucinogenic scene from a 1970s science fiction film, these facets simulate movement, light and shadow in flux, to capture the warped symmetry and sun-scorched surface of the desert earth.
What are the codes and signs of the medium? Do the historical echos reach these public lands that hands have barely touched? Can these objects reach for the sky like Joshua or the trees just outside?
The Cahuilla Native Americans used the leaves of the Yucca brevifolia to weave baskets and sandals. Now there are only shapes and trails made by other hands, shadows of bodies lay beside the reversed imprints of natural objects. Monochromatic blackness of form and texture, the art of ritualized behavior.
For an idea of the desert these works collide. They reach from their origin in the city, activated by the howling wind, the concentrated particles of dust, a wandering eye, a beating heart, or a racing mind.
Neptune at opposition.
The waning moon will laugh tonight.
–August 31, 2013, Shangrila, Joshua Tree
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Nora Jean Petersen received her MFA from Art Center College of Art and Design and her BA from Sarah Lawrence College. She has exhibited at China Art Objects, Los Angeles; Karen Lovegrove Gallery, Los Angeles; Galerie Nomadenoase, Hamburg; and at the Santa Monica Museum of Art, Santa Monica, among others.
Fay Ray received her MFA from Columbia University and her BFA from Otis College of Art and Design. She has exhibited at various institutions and galleries including Aran Cravey Gallery, Venice; Honor Fraser Gallery, Los Angeles; LAXART, Los Angeles; Gagosian Gallery, New York, NY; and El Museo del Barrio, New York, among others.
All photos © Joel Woodman
INFO about SHANGRILA 2013: Burrito Deluxe, Joshua Tree, California
Organized by Steven Bankhead and Jesse Benson
August 30 – September 1
List of Participants: