Kira Lynn Harris

Glittering Dystopias
Sat Jul 11, 2015 - Sat Aug 29, 2015

In this exhibition, Kira Lynn Harris will create new site specific works examining visual representations of the city in contemporary culture.

The artist manipulates light – natural, staged and reflected – while using the existing architecture of the gallery to change the viewer’s subjective experience of interior space. The works for this show, both drawings and installations, continue Harris’ exploration of contemporary urban landscapes that have included New York, Los Angeles, Hong Kong, Tokyo and Dubai as well as those depicted in science fiction films from Metropolis to Brazil to Mad Max. These city skylines become source material for asymmetrical and broken grid drawings on paper as well as for a large scale, site specific wall drawing.  The title of the exhibit recalls William Morris’ precursor to contemporary fantasy literature, The Story of the Glittering Plain from 1891.

Art at the intersection of the ephemeral, light, architecture, space and science fiction

Artist Statement-Kira Lynn Harris

In my work, I investigate space, light and perception; my installations provide occasions of de-stabilization and re-orientation.  I make architectural and environmental interventions – using light and reflective surfaces; inverting subject and object, figure and ground; and / or reversing up and down, exterior and interior.  I typically create these installations in nominal spaces – those instances in our built environment that we ignore, overlook or fail to see in our rush to get from one place to another – corners, hallways, stairwells, ceilings, floors, blank walls…

Also, like most artists, there are a number of ideas, concepts, images that “live in my head” most times.  My explorations of architectural spaces and light bring me inevitably to an interest in western perspective drawing from the Renaissance on.  Another concern is the sublime – that arresting, overwhelming and, usually, momentary combined feeling of beauty and horror theorized by many philosophers.  Another longstanding passion is for speculative fiction – science fiction, fantasy, horror all of which pose “what if” questions?

These interests all form tangential rather than direct relationships to one another and, until the last few years, they were oblique and subterranean connections in my installations, drawings and photographs.  In recent work, these implicit associations are now explicit, in a series of large-scale wall drawings based on scenes from science fiction films such as Metropolis, Blade Runner and 2001: Space Odyssey and music from artists like Sun Ra, George Clinton with Parliament Funkadelic and more….