Friday, March 7, 2014

COMING ATTRACTIONS AT MOBA: Back to Eden - Contemporary Artists Wander the Garden

Barnaby Furnas
The Fruit Eaters, 2013
Acrylic on linen
88 x 96 inches
Courtesy the Artist and Victoria Miro, London
© Barnaby Furnas. Photography: Stephen White

Back to Eden: Contemporary Artists Wander the Garden looks at the biblical story of the Garden of Eden, and how it has directly and indirectly inspired contemporary artists. In particular, the exhibition considers the Garden of Eden as a lens through which to view the relationship between humans and the natural world.

Artists in the Western world have used elements of the Garden of Eden story for centuries as potent symbols: the Creation of plants and animals, the Tree of Knowledge and the Tree of Life, the Forbidden Fruit, the Serpent, the Fall of Man and the Expulsion from Eden. In this exhibition, contemporary artists continue to mine this rich resource for metaphors that are both personal and universal. Barnaby Furnas’s The Fruit Eaters takes the classic subject of Adam and Eve biting the apple, and renders it fresh and vital, with paint that seems to still be dripping, and a violent and malevolent serpent circling menacingly. Jim Dine’s Garden of Eden gate evokes happy childhood memories of his family’s tool store. Mark Dion, in a work created especially for this exhibition, presents a fantasy diorama of the serpent, imagining how he looked with legs, before he was cursed by God to crawl on his belly.

The garden has for centuries represented a perfect natural paradise that we have now lost. Several of the artists in the exhibition consider the ways in which humans have tried to recreate a “perfect garden.” Naomi Reis’s drawings of imaginary Modernist buildings are overlaid with lush plants and fountains that, like the Gardens of Babylon or the botanical gardens of Victorian times, show the attempt to recreate an exotic paradise within a completely foreign environment. In Lina Puerta’s installations, nature becomes the intruder, reinserting itself into the urban environment, intertwined with manmade sequins and buttons: a garden that is a mix of the natural and the manmade. Mary Temple's garden appears as a shadow cast on a gallery wall, caused by light streaming through an imaginary window...please read it all with slideshow:

Thanks to the Museum of Biblica Art/MOBA, sidebar

Museum of Biblical Art
1865 Broadway at 61st Street
New York, NY 10023
Phone: (212) 408-1500

St. Alban English Mission, Antigua, Guatemala is a outreach project of The St. James English parish, Episcopal Diocese of Guatemala, IARCA

The Most Reverend Armando Guerra Soria,  Rector and Primate of Central America

The Reverend Ricardo Frohmader, Associate Minister
St Alban Mission holds services every Sunday at Noon
Casa Convento Concepcion, Antigua Guatemala
All are welcome - See welcome letter at the sidebar

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