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In EVERY LAST THING, American artist Beth Lipman explores themes of time and human precarity through the use of cultural objects and prehistoric flora. Endangered plants, latent humanoid forms and communal emblems allude to mortality and transience, fossilized in glass and metal. This marks her first solo exhibition with Nohra Haime Gallery.
Lipman’s sculptural practice explores aspects of material culture and deep time through still lives, site-specific installations, and photographs. Ephemeral and intricate, the work addresses mortality, materiality, and temporality, critical issues since the inception of the still life tradition in the 17th century, that continue to be relevant.
Every Last Thing features several new works, including All In All, a large-scale mixed media sculpture that alludes to the layered, porous nature of time. A fantastical paleolithic landscape of extinct and existent flora encrusts the surface of a table while countless upended vessels precariously cling to the underside. The body politic becomes the subject of Lipman’s work, revealing our past as we navigate through the present, leaving traces of ourselves, apparent only in the future.
In the Distill series, the artist placed ancient flora such as conifer, lichen, ginkgo, and ferns inside cardboard boxes arranged with miniature furniture to create small-scale dioramas. Forcing the relationship between prehistoric and current geological eras, these uncanny scenarios were molded in resin, bonded with sand, and filled with molten brass or iron. The casting process simultaneously created replicas and destroyed the landscapes, ultimately translating the vignettes into fossilized depictions of the Anthropocene era.
Every Last Thing cleverly intertwines the raw transience of nature with the manmade, shining a light on our forlorn past. The result is an eerie yet enchanting landscape that contemplates our permanence and paves the way for hopeful visions of the future.
This exhibition opens in conjunction with Collective Elegy, a mid-career survey at the Museum of Arts and Design in New York, from September 24, 2020 to August 15, 2021. Click HERE for more information.
Born in Philadelphia, Lipman is a multidisciplinary sculptor living and working in Wisconsin. She earned her Bachelor of Fine Arts from Tyler School of Art, Temple University in 1994. Lipman has received numerous awards including the USA Berman Bloch Fellowship, Pollock Krasner Grant, and a Louis Comfort Tiffany Foundation Grant and was recently inducted into the American Craft Council’s College of Fellows. Lipman work has been widely exhibited at institutions such as Ringling Museum of Art, Sarasota, FL; ICA/MECA, Portland, ME; RISD Museum, Providence, RI; Milwaukee Art Museum, WI and Gustavsbergs Konsthall, Gustavsberg, Sweden. Lipman’s work is in the collection of over 30 museums including the Smithsonian American Art Museum, Washington, D.C.; North Carolina Museum of Art, Raleigh, NC; Des Moines Art Center, IA; Brooklyn Museum of Art, NY; Kemper Museum for Contemporary Art, Kansas City, MO; and the Jewish Museum, New York, NY.
Dates: November 5, 2020 – January 16, 2021
For more information: Leslie Garrett at 212-888-3550 or firstname.lastname@example.org
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