October 12, 2013 - December 07, 2013
Jeremy Johnson returns to Prairie for his second show, this time collaborating with Aaron Kent, to fill the gallery space with taxidermy, mixed media and installation. Gallery hours are Tuesday through Friday 10-6 and Saturday 10-4.
Works in the show all bear some relation to traditional practices of natural history in which plants and animals were collected, dissected and presented in various displays for educational purposes. Included in this show is a mating display of Great Malaysian Argus Pheasants as well as a work station installed atop an early 1900’s roll top desk showcasing pieces in process to provide the viewer a better understanding of traditional practices used during the Victorian age.
Aaron Kent presents works of a more contemporary nature featuring sculpture casts from bone forms. His work will also include a range of molds and process work on modern work surfaces as a counterpoint to Johnson’s highly finished work. Kent’s work explores the natural cycle of deterioration and regeneration of new life.
Johnson’s taxidermy performed on both commonplace and exotic animals who have all died from natural causes, falls somewhere between traditional sculpture and traditional taxidermy. His work on the animals which are presented in the show includes everything from skinning, dissecting, preserving and reassembling them to fabricating unique displays to hold various specimens. While some pieces represent the animal in his or her natural state, others are altered to question man’s relationship to the natural environment. In addition to the opening reception on October 12, Johnson will discuss his work and ideas about naturalism and Alfred Russel Wallace on November 9 at 7:00 pm in commemoration of the 100 year anniversary of Wallace’s death. Participants will observe and interact with animal specimens at various stages of processing. Demonstrations including insect mounting, taxidermy, and skeletal articulation will be provided as way to reconsider the philosophy and science of nature.