The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum

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Important Update

June 26, 2011 to December 31, 2011 |

Kate Eric: One Plus One Minus One

Kate Eric is a decade-old collaborative identity comprised of Kate Tedman and Eric Siemens. The married couple spend part of their time in San Francisco and part in Italy, where they own a rural house that provides the perfect setting for long spans of isolation. Taking advantage of the lack of electricity, telephone, and Internet, they make work that is incredibly nuanced and labor intensive.

Working jointly, the artists create surreal scenes that transcend our human scale. Their depictions present either minuscule molecular-like interactions or—seemingly quite the opposite—the dynamics of the cosmos and the universe. These are formally expressed by the juxtaposition of different punctilious organic structures, clashing floating veils, or proto-animal parts in watery and almost antigravitational environments. The artists summarize their particular interests in this manner: “… the inspiration comes as much from what lies on the other end of a microscope or telescope …”

Kate Eric explain: “We enjoy looking at interactions of any sort, whether it be carbon and hydrogen, a new idea and a preconceived notion, or a cartoon elephant and a mouse. It is the commonality in these interactions that fascinates us.” The close and extended examination of such relationships allows them to create “meticulously conceived, dutifully researched, and extravagantly prepared” paintings and drawings. Yet, they also rely on accidents. “We do depend heavily on these mistakes to spark further exploration. Art without accident is evolution without mutation. Thankfully, we have each other and our wildly insufficient communication skills to provide an endless source of accidents.”

The exhibition at The Aldrich is the artists’ first museum exhibition and it presents a small survey from early work, where the human figure was somewhat present, to the latest, which is quite devoid of human life. “Over time, the fascination with equivocating human interactions with that of purely physical objects has dwindled and, along with it, the need for necessarily including the human form itself.”

Mónica Ramírez-Montagut, Curator.