“Synthesizing Nature” … comes at an exceedingly important and critical moment in our history. It is a powerful reminder of the impact of the nature/culture distinction on contemporary affairs and the messy implications of attempting, once and for all, finally, to dispense with it altogether. – Clarence Burton Sheffield, Jr., Professor, Rochester Institute of Technology
Synthesizing Nature is an invitational exhibition, curated by Cory E. Card of View (Old Forge, NY) and Wes Sherman of the Center for Contemporary Art (Bedminster Township, NJ), which explores the ongoing dialog between nature and culture. The exhibition features work by 10 nationally and internationally acclaimed artists:
Roberley Bell’s work is centered on the production of sculpture and site specific public projects. Her work explores the natural world both in abstracting from, and in borrowing to reveal hyper-realized fantastical landscapes. The Other Landscapes series explores the space where the artificial meets the real. Bell’s sculptures reconsider, or interrogate, what is real against what is not, to the point where even nature itself is uncertain, with the intent to employ imagination and senses, even with the artifice.
Bell is Professor in the School for Photographic Arts and Sciences at Rochester Institute of Technology. She holds an MFA in sculpture from the State University of New York, College of Ceramics at Alfred University. Her work has been exhibited extensively in solo and group exhibitions. She
been involved in numerous public projects throughout the Northeastern United States, Europe, and Turkey. Bell is a two-time recipient of the Turkish Cultural Foundation Fellowship, and has received grants from the Puffin Foundation and the Pollock Krasner Foundation.
Katrina Bello is an artist who works in Newark and Montclair, New Jersey and in Metro Manila, Philippines. She works primarily in painting and drawing. She attained her BFA from Mason Gross School of Arts, Rutgers University, New Jersey, and her MFA from the Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore, Maryland. She has exhibited in the United States and the Philippines. Katrina recently founded an artist collaborative space in Montclair, New Jersey that hosts site-specific installation, media work, and creative dialogue.
Tiffany Calvert’s paintings and drawings emphasize a blurring of lines between figuration and abstraction. In her recent flower paintings, she works by painting over and into existing imagery. By moving the rendered object away from its original intent of representation into a realm of partial abstraction, the focus shifts to the physicality of the paint, over representation of the real, while paying homage to the natural forms that exist below the surface.
Tiffany Calvert's work has been exhibited in group and solo exhibitions including the Lawrimore Project in Seattle, Visual Arts Gallery at SVA New York, and The Lab in San Francisco. She has been a recipient of a Geraldine R. Dodge Fellowship, and been resident at the ArtOmi International Arts Center (NY) and Djerassi Resident Artists Program (CA). In 2010 she was awarded a Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant. Her most recent solo exhibition was mounted with Carl & Sloan Contemporary in Portland, OR.
Colin Edgington is a visual artist and writer currently living and working in the greater New York area. He was born in Denver, Colorado but grew up in Central New Mexico, a place that has shaped (and continues to shape) his practice and understanding of the world. His work has been exhibited internationally and published nationally. He was named the winner of the Iowa Review Photography Prize for his seemingly authorless body of work titled [umbrae] in 2012. He holds a BAFA in studio art from the University of New Mexico, an MFA in studio art from the Mason Gross School of Arts, Rutgers University, and an MFA in Art Criticism and Writing from the School of Visual Arts, NYC.
Abraham Ferraro is a sculptor and performance artist. His recent body of work, comprised of arrows and laser cut imagery, focuses around the idea of mailable art that collects postage stamps and markings as they are exhibited. As an extension of the laser cut series, Ferraro has begun inscribing text onto natural objects such as leaves and rocks.
Ferraro is a graduate of SUNY Fredonia (BFA) and SUNY Albany (MA & MFA). He has exhibited internationally, and extensively in New York State. Ferraro is Shop Supervisor in the School of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.
Nick Marshall’s work is embodied with the synthetics of memory, and the desire to escape reality through the exaltation of decorative items. His new series of botanical studies are backlit photographs of artificial flowers against domestic backdrops that explore the desire of beauty, without the potential for decay.
Nick Marshall holds an MFA in Photography from the School of Photographic Arts and Sciences at Rochester Institute of Technology, and a BFA from Columbus College of Art and Design. His work has been featured in exhibitions at View, The George Eastman Museum, Visual Studies Workshops, and the Hartnett Gallery at the University of Rochester. His series e_scapes was the subject of a feature article in vol. 43 of Afterimage: The Journal of Media Arts and Cultural Criticism.
Jonathan Ricci creates vibrantly hued paintings and collages that explore the migratory patterns of birds through the language of montage, direction, and symbol. The paintings incorporate imagery of birds, painted patterns that invoke aerial landscapes, maps, and directional patterns.
Ricci is a two-time Nes Artist Resident in Skagaströnd, Iceland. He exhibits extensively throughout the Northeast, and is represented by Zia Gallery in Winnetka, Illinois. He holds an MFA in Painting from Bowling Green State University.
Autumn Richardson and Richard Skelton run Corbel Stone Press; a small press based in Cumbria, northern England. They publish audio recordings, texts, and art—specializing in handmade editions using environmentally friendly materials. Their work is particularly focused on landscape, the poetics of place, ecology, folklore, and animism.
The artists maintain a deep connection to space and place. Through analysis, collecting in sound, text, and objects, they are able to convey their reverence of the landscape, and the transformations it has undergone over the centuries. Their Relics' series comprised of text, music, and artifacts, draws attention to the fact that the now 'barren' landscape of northern England used to be heavily forested.
Aaron Williams’ work utilizes cut-up techniques incorporating stock photography, books, and cnc routed frames with found and altered materials, to invoke the idea of landscape. These works are visually organized by the incorporation of straight lines and patterns that create a sense of control and fragmentation.
Williams holds an MFA from Mason Gross School of Art, Rutgers University. He has exhibited extensively in solo and group exhibitions throughout the Northeast. His work has been featured in numerous publications, and was the 2008 recipient of the Ludwig Vogelstein Foundation Grant. He currently lives and works in Queens, NY.