LORI NIX

THE CITY

20 March - 17 May, 2014

Galerie Klüser 2

With “The City”, Galerie Klüser 2 is presenting the first ever solo exhibition in Germany by American artist Lori Nix. Her aesthetic and simultaneously highly disturbing, apocalyptic photographs are the outcome of a complicated work process: in detailed modelling by hand, the artist replicates all the objects depicted in miniature and then arranges them in a diorama so that when fixed in the photograph, the image generated appears to reproduce reality.
The production of the dioramas, most of which are about 150 cm long, takes several months; one look at the works makes it quite easy for us to imagine why. On the one hand, Nix draws her inspiration from such catastrophe films of the 1960s and 1970s as Planet of the Apes, Towering Inferno or The Poseidon Adventure; on the other hand, from her own biography: the artist was born in 1969 and grew up in a rural region of the US state of Kansas, which is regularly afflicted by tornados, blizzards, plagues of insects and heavy thunder storms – destruction and transience are omnipresent. A college education in ceramics and photography provides the foundation for the artist’s creative oeuvre, giving her the abilities and practical skills she requires for her complex projects. Artistically, the works of Lori Nix – above all in their use of colours – are oriented on the art of the so-called Hudson River School as well as that of the German romantic Caspar David Friedrich. Thematically, a wide spectrum emerges when viewing the photographs from the series “The City”: social criticism and nature conservation, technological inroads into civilisation and the vanity of man, isolation and destruction. Scattered elements of humour take the dystopian edge from the works and create a distance allowing the viewer to perceive these images as a trigger to thought rather than an apocalyptic threat. But the dominant aspect here is the immense force with which nature is reclaiming her own space. On occasion, daylight breaks through the collapsed roofs of places previously protected from the sun to encourage consumption or – in a more paradoxical way – for conservational reasons.

Lori Nix’s socio-critical attitude is evident: the anthropocentric world view is shaken to its foundations, the functions of control centres and public places are taken to absurdity. Nature alone remains as a final bastion of vitality, and as rudiments of a “before” the last artificial lights imply a “now” in her portrayals of the “after”.

Lori Nix lives and works in New York City. Her works can be found in important private and public collections like the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston,Texas; the Smithsonian American Art Museum, Washington, DC; the El Paso Museum of Art, El Paso, Texas, and the Microsoft Art Collection.

Ramona Greiner translated by Lucinda Rennison

Selected Works

Lori Nix, photography

About the artist

Lori Nix (born 1969) meticulously constructs detailed miniature worlds (together with her partner Kathleen Gerber), which she captures on camera with precisely adjusted exposure. Studies in ceramics and photography at the Ohio University lay the groundwork for this artistic process. In an aesthetic of colour deriving from the Romantic and Hudson River School, her dioramas picture post-apocalyptic sceneries. As a source of inspiration serve disaster movies of the 60s and 70s together with her childhood experience of natural forces in Kansas. In one of her latest series “The City” Nix creates an urban world that is devoid of humans and slowly reclaimed by nature. The Galerie Klüser dedicated a whole exhibition to the series in 2013, constituting the artist’s first solo exhibition in Germany. Nix’s work is included in various private and public collections such as the Museum of Fine Arts in Houston, the Smithsonian American Art Museum in Washington, DC, the El Paso Museum of Art in El Paso, Texas, the Microsoft Art Collection, the collection of the Museum Schloss Moyland in Bedburg-Hau, Germany, the Chase Manhattan Bank, the Dow Jones & Company and the HBC Global Art Collection in New York City, New York. Since their new series ‘Empire’ (2017) the artists Lori Nix and Kathleen Gerber are also known as the artist duo NIX/GERBER.

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