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Exhibition Dates: January 25-February 4, 2022

animalmineralvegetable is a collaborative show between second year MFA students Cooper Gibson and Amy Yeager.

The show explores the relationships between the natural and synthetic world. Through sculpture, drawing/painting, and video this body of work asks questions about how "nature" is constructed. The artists worked together to create an installation within which the viewers can ponder and propose answers to these questions. This body of work also serves as a monument to the friendship of the artists and their collective interest in fun, play, and their shared sense of humor -- things that often fall to the wayside in their individual practices.

The title animalmineralvegetable comes from a variation on the spoken parlor game 20 questions, Animal, Vegetable, Mineral? This variation aims to categorize the subject of the guessing game using the Linnaean taxonomy of the natural world. This version of the game allows room for unusual technicalities such as items like a wooden table being considered vegetable since wood comes from trees. This ambiguity and failure to neatly categorize the natural world speaks conceptually to the interests of this work.

This exhibition is centered around a series of collaborative sculptures designed and created by the artists. The sculptures were inspired by leaves, plants, organs, and rocks. The initial sketches were done quickly and collaboratively. Both artists work from observation and imagination to create these drawings. They were then translated into sculpture using carved foam and plywood. The foam was carved and drawn into using jigsaws, drills, and a hot knife. The sculptures are painted with black rubberized undercoating and matte black paint. The decision to make the work black and monochromatic comes from the artists’ mutual interest in drawing. The color is a reference to traditional drawing mediums such as charcoal and graphite, a reference to charred or burned things, and manufactured products such as rubber, silicone, and latex.