Now showing at LACE (Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions) is a multifaceted group exhibit, (Re-) Cycles of Paradise, organized by the curatorial masterminds of ARTPORT_making waves. This exhibit deviates from the often masculine and political stance concerning climate change and rather addresses the complexity of gender within environmental challenges through a display that tantalizes the senses. Embedded amongst the mixed-media sculptures, video installations, documentary research, and performances, are sub-themes that branch out of the broad subject matter that is gender and climate change. The conservation of water, preservation of forests, adaptation to surroundings, and alarming exploitation for the benefit of profit, are explored as part of the content. This intricate conceptual project takes you from one part of the world to another and exposes the hardships women face every day in order to protect their families and survive in a deteriorating environment.
This collection of ideas creates a statement on a global scale and demands viewers to feel an impact towards the susceptibility women are struggling with. Throughout this collection, women are naturally placed in Mother Earth's position as caretakers of her natural resources. Recycling is a crucial part of this array of installations since most of the pieces if not made by recycled material, encourage the process of minimizing the use of our resources or adequately reusing them.
Kim Abeles' Women and Water puts into perspective how in many countries women travel for hours to make water accessible to their families. A basic need is grandly depicted in a 8’ x 15’ video wall composition of 20 monitors placed in pairs. As one plays in real time, the video next to it plays 1 minute every 6 hours, making us aware of how painfully slow it is for many women to carry water in comparison to Americans’ immediate accessibility to water. Women’s traditional roles of feeding the family or washing are symbolically transformed into common practical objects that take on a whole new meaning- as a regular wooden table balances itself on small buckets placed in larger buckets filled with water. Roman Signer's Table results in reflection on how women struggle to balance these chores as their environment gradually disappears. The concept of Mother Nature serves as a metaphor for maternal qualities through representational imagery- bellies of pregnant women, placed in the center of the gallery, look up at their unborn children- leaf-like embryos that calmly hang and unknowingly make up the tree of life in Nnenna Okore's Mother.Nature. (Re-) Cycles of Paradise is a dynamic project that allows the viewer to become part of a sensual world through visually and conceptually large artworks.
(Re-) Cycles of Paradise will run through December 16 at LACE (welcometolace.org)
Words by Jessica Portillo. Images courtesy of LACE.