Suzanne Anker: Culturing Life

Artworks (Clockwise): Suzanne Anker: Vanitas in a Petri Dish (01), Vanitas in a Petri Dish (03), Vanitas in a Petri Dish (08).

Suzanne Anker: Culturing Life

Suzanne Anker, a New York-based visual artist and theorist, presents her work in the solo exhibition “Suzanne Anker: Culturing Life” at Crossroads School for Arts & Sciences’ Sam Francis Gallery. A pioneer in Bio Art, Anker’s experimental approach uses an array of mediums and techniques—from digital sculpture to bio-imaging with a dissecting microscope—to see the world and create artworks in novel ways. Anker’s art shows that materials and methods employed by scientists in the lab can be adapted by artists in the studio with entirely different and, in her case, truly wondrous results. Art historian Sabine Flach defines Anker’s artwork as “an intermediary realm that interacts with elegance and ease between art and science as art.

”Sculptures from Anker’s “Remote Sensing” series resemble miniature landscapes but are, in fact, rapid prototype extrusions simulating satellite data. These fantasy pieces reference areas of self-inflicted toxicity in our landscape and take Google Earth’s mediated imagery to a new, frightening realm. Beautifully disturbing, the large-scale images of natural and unnatural material in the “Vanitas in a Petri Dish” series question what happens to pictorial representations when experiments with bio-engineering intersect with reproduction and art. These photographs, in line with “Vanitas in a Petri Dish” and the exhibition’s title, “Culturing Life,” speak to slippery semantics, speculative thinking and morality of life and death. For sculptures in the “Biota” installation, Anker uses porcelain, a ceramic material developed in China around 200 B.C., and cutting-edge silver-leaf rapid prototyping. Here, she juxtaposes ancient methods and materials with 21st-century processes to create sculptures of the natural world invaded by tiny rambunctious, metallic figurines that seem to hail from the darker side of the imagination. In this exhibition there is a strong whiff of the supernatural, the extraordinary, that perhaps emanates from the interventions of science and art on the natural world.

Please join Crossroads School for a special talk and panel discussion with exhibiting artist Suzanne Anker and artists Jessica Rath and Mick Lorusso. Crossroads’ director of the Sam Francis Gallery, Pam Posey, will moderate the discussion.

Light refreshments will be served following the talk.

Through its collaborative programs with artists and art organizations, Crossroadds’ “I Am an Artist” Project empowers students to think and work as professional artists.

Sam Francis Gallery – Building 1734
Crossroads School
1714 21st St,
Santa Monica, CA

Gallery Hours: Monday – Friday // 10 am – 3 pm
Information: 310·829·7391, ext. 425 //

Suzanne Anker: Culturing Life

September 17 – 0ctober 30, 2015

Opening Reception
Thursday, September 17, 2015
5-7 pm

The Intersection of Art and Science:
Artist’s Talk and Panel Discussion
Sunday. September 20, 2015
4 pm