UCSD Arts & HumanitiesUCSD Arts & Humanities
September 27, 1999

Media Contact: Kathleen Stoughton at University Art Gallery, (858) 534-0419 or kstoughton@ucsd.edu, or Kate Callen at (858) 534-0361 or kcallen@ucsd.edu


Nature/Process, an exhibition of eight artists who employ the forces of nature in the production of their art, will be on view October 2 through December 11 in the University Art Gallery at the University of California, San Diego. A reception for the artists, held October 1 from 5 to 7:30 p.m. in the Gallery, is free and open to the public.

Nature/Process features the work of Roger Ackling, Dove Bradshaw, Mineko Grimmer, Daniel Ladd, Garnett Puett, Mario Reis, Canan Tolon, and Jonathan White. These artists work internationally with a range of phenomena such as fire, melting ice, growing plants, and living insects to create painting, sculpture, and installation. The results are lyrical examples of the relationships between nature and art.

The sculptures of Roger Ackling, a native and resident of London, are alluring meditative objects. Ackling channels the sun's rays, burning patterns of repeated lines onto found pieces of wood. The end result is a precise topography of nature's force.

Dove Bradshaw's art explores nature as it is, indeterminate and evolving with time. After laying initial foundations for her paintings, sculptures, and installations, she withdraws to allow natural processes such as oxidation and erosion to develop the pieces. Born in New York, Bradshaw maintains studios in New York and Pennsylvania.

Mineko Grimmer's installations are catalysts for unpredictable symphonies of musical and visual metamorphoses. In Reflections, she suspends an inverted pyramid of pebbles encased in ice above a pool of water, a metal bar, and piano strings. As the ice melts, the pebbles fall randomly, creating a collection of sounds and mesmerizing reflections. Originally from Japan, Grimmer currently resides in Los Angeles.

Daniel Ladd, a native and resident of Vermont, has worked for over two decades with the process of growing gourds into molds. He introduces young plants into molds of forms ranging from ancient statuary to found objects, where the gourds grow until maturity. The mold is removed to reveal engaging representations of the original objects. 

A fourth-generation beekeeper, Garnett Puett creates metal armatures ranging from human representations to elliptical shapes, then introduces honeybees to transform the armature with their wax comb. Born in Georgia, Puett divides his time between studios in Hawaii and Pennsylvania.

Mario Reis' paintings explore the inherent qualities of the natural landscape. In his series Nature Watercolors, Reis submerges blank canvases into waterways across the world. The accumulation of sediment onto the canvas reflects the flow and ebb of the water and the palette of the river itself. Born in Weingarten, Germany, Reis currently resides in Dusseldorf.

The landscape's continual cycle of decay and regeneration is the central focus of Canan Tolon's work. Using natural materials such as living grass, rust, coffee grounds, and wax, many of Tolon's paintings, drawings and sculptures grow, flourish and eventually die within the gallery space. In each work, Tolon seeks to explore "the transformation that is caused by the presence of life." Originally from Turkey, Tolon now resides in Oakland, California.

The paintings of Jonathan White, a native and resident of Los Angeles, are tangible representations of transient memories. Souvenir snapshots from the artist's youth are transferred onto canvas using the cyanotype process. These otherwise familiar scenes are tinged with an undeniable sense of mystery.

Nature/Process was curated by Kathleen Stoughton, Director of the University Art Gallery UCSD. The Gallery is located at the west end of Mandeville Center on the UCSD campus in La Jolla. Gallery hours are Tuesday through Saturday 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. and by appointment for groups of ten or more. Admission is free. Docent tours are available. For information, call the Gallery at (858) 534-2107.