Silas Inoue’s works are based on an idiosyncratic approach to nature and humanity – concepts that he considers inseparable. In his on going series of large-scale drawings, The Wolf Pack series, wolves have been compressed so they just barely fit into the frames. The drawings evolve around the wolf as signifier of wild nature, and humanity’s attempt to systemize the world and adjust nature to the confines of culture. Through the establishment of ideal living conditions for mold fungus, Inoue explores in a parallel series, The Mold series, the aesthetics and lifespans of mold, by giving artistic authorship to the organisms, their unpredictability and invasive properties. Thus Silas Inoue makes use of classic as well as less conventional materials, including sugar, cooking oil, mold and other living organisms. Combining intuitive methods with more analytic observations of the world, he creates works that are humorous, sensorial, and thought evoking.
John Knuth continues to reinvent how an image is made, and how that process informs the work’s meaning. In his series, The Distorted Landscape reflects Knuth’s commitment to exploring how we make images of our changing landscape. To do this, Knuth employs Mylar, the highly reflective, razor-thin material often used for emergency blankets. The mirrored Mylar is layered in mountain silhouette forms, and as the material is cut, stapled, stretched and pulled, ripples form that cause the Mylar to distort. Thus The Distorted Landscape does not offer a fixed view of what the landscape is rather it proposes a vision of an ever-changing environment that shifts as we interact with it. The series, The Fly Paintings, is another excellent sample of Knuth’s exploration of the physical quality and poetic meaning of materials. In these paintings, Knuth feeds a careful mixture of sugar and acrylic paint to thousands of houseflies for them to digest and regurgitate onto the canvas over a course of time. The resulting paintings are a record of this process, dense layers of chromatic fields sweeping across a surface produced by millions of small dots of flyspeck markings on the surface of the canvas. In this way Knuth’s multifaceted work explores themes of transcendence through material manipulation. He transforms seemingly mundane materials into extraordinary objects. His investigative process bridges the disciplines of aesthetics and chemistry to reveal new avenues of perception.