15 NOVEMBER - 15 DECEMBER 1996
Over the past fifteen years, Laramée has explored the sometimes blurry boundaries among art, science and nature. The exhibition at Rice Art Gallery will present a spectrum of her evocative creations, including installations, drawings, and sculpture. The title, Facts Are Slippery, refers to the subjectivity that is inherent in scientific inquiry, but often goes unnoticed. Science and technology can be seductive, offering up what appears to be a logical and unbiased point of view. Laramée, however, reasserts the inescapable ambiguity and biases that are a part of science. She comments, “Science is supposed to present itself as rational and objective, which is, of course, an impossibility for humans. I not only wish to critique science, but also want to draw attention to the aesthetics, poetry and metaphor in science: to reevaluate wonder.” In Laramée’s playful and evocative sculptures and installations of scientific apparatus and natural materials, nature sneaks back in and reasserts itself.
In works such as An Apparatus for the Distillation of Vague Intuitions, (first installation, 1994) Laramée constructs sculptural objects in order to demonstrate or represent a transformative process. For the Rice exhibition Laramée will expand upon Apparatus, an installation that appears to be a vast biochemical workshop. An array of tall metal stands, clamps, glass beakers and vials - many hand-blown by Laramée - sprawls across a platform designed to suggest a laboratory table. Various colored solutions and wires attached to flowers contribute to the spectacle of a giant chemistry set gone amuck. Closer inspection reveals delicately etched fragments of text that offer a glimpse of Laramée’s philosophy as profoundly human, one that allows room for both doubt and faith.
Another installation, Left Handed Data Glove, draws attention to electricity as an extension of the nervous system. Laramée notes, “We think of electricity as being a technological force, and it’s a natural force, in the same way that human beings are a natural force.” Facts Are Slippery will also include a number of individual sculptures, as well as a large selection of Laramée’s recent graphic work, including over one hundred drawings related to the creation of An Apparatus for the Distillation of Vague Intuitions.
ABOUT THE ARTIST
Eve Andrée Laramée’s work has been shown extensively in the United States and Europe. She has taught at numerous colleges and universities including The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Art and Science, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Rhode Island School of Design and New York University. She is currently on the faculty at Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore. Eve Andrée Laramée was born in Los Angeles; she lives in Brooklyn, New York.