The investigation of landscape, nature and ecology in contemporary art has its roots, in part, in the legacy of Romanticism and the search for man's place within the world.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Artist: Timothy Horn

Currently based in Santa Fe, New Mexico, sculptor Timothy Horn was born in Melbourne, Australia. He studied Sculpture at the Victorian College of the Arts and then Glass at the Australian National University. A Samstag Scholarship brought him to the US in 2002, where he completed graduate study at Massachusetts College of Art.

Horn's work straddles several disciplines and draws from a broad bank of skills, including blown glass, cast lead crystal and various metals. His current "Tree of Heaven" series combines the two distinct sources that have inspired his work over the past decade: those being patterns of 17th and 18th-century jewelry, and 19th-century studies of natural forms such as lichen, coral and sea weed. Beginning with the silhouette of an item of jewelry projected at a much larger scale, Horn drafts a working pattern with the addition of grafted imagery of natural forms. He then sets about fabricating a tree-like structure in wax, to be cast in bronze and nickel-plated. Pearls become large baroque forms in mirrored blown glass.

The focus of Horn's work is the meeting point between the natural and constructed worlds, where he attempts to locate the area of slippage between the organic and artificial. Scale is important, but he also chooses to work with materials for their inherent physical and metaphorical qualities. In 2008 the fabled "Amber Room" belonging to Catherine the Great of Russia, considered "the eighth wonder of the world", inspired a crystallized rock sugar encrusted carriage for Horn's exhibition Bitter Suite at the de Young Museum in San Francisco. Inspired by 19th-century zoologist Ernst Haeckel's engravings of jellyfish, he began an ongoing series of large works made of transparent rubber, that culminated in his first solo exhibition in New York, Villa Medusa in 2006.

Horn's work has featured in exhibitions at the Andy Warhol Museum in Pittsburgh, the Museum of Arts and Design in New York, GoMA in Brisbane, and the National Gallery of Australia in Canberra. Horn has received grants from the Pollock Krasner Foundation, Massachusetts Cultural Council, LEF New England, the Australia Council and a Queen Elizabeth II Silver Jubilee Award. Residencies include the British Academy in Rome, Yaddo in upstate New York, the Fine Art Works Center in Provincetown and RAiR in New Mexico.

Timothy Horn is represented by PPOW Gallery in NYC, where he will have solo show in the fall of 2011.

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