Verging Paths, Verdant Ends

Alex Ferrante, Zelding Fellow

Nov 21st - Jan 3rd, 2021

Zeldin Fellow Resident Artist Alex Ferrante has spent his Fellowship year exploring a new body of work that we will present with this exciting solo exhibition. In each incoming class, a new Resident is awarded the Zeldin Fellowship, which provides a year of funding so that the artist can focus on studio work.

Nature morte, often synonymous with still life images, translates from French to ‘dead nature.’ This strong phrase brings to mind visual depictions of abundance and power, life and decay, and the inexorable passage of time, and therefore cements the inevitability of death in the viewer’s mind. 

Verging Paths, Verdant Ends considers our inclination to still time, to depict, contain, and organize the natural world. Rather than positioning nature and culture as opposing forces, I complicate this relationship through the process of making. The sculptures fall with the forces of gravity and obscure moments of clarity. The sculptures on the wall reference the garden and represent paradise. Just as a sun or moon dips behind the horizon these versions of paradise are a place that can be seen yet is beyond reach, they are aspirational places of elusive hope.

The domestic table of still life is a threshold between interior and exterior. It is a space where cultivation of the natural world is organized, presented and eventually consumed. The domestic table becomes a horizon line on the edge of perception. It is a space of tension between  constructed and unknown worlds. The sculptures are not singular in meaning and are a reminder of the way in which nature so often becomes an other, a reflection, a means of defining the self. The sculptures, in their different approaches to making, create a narrative of simultaneous growth and decay and are reminders of the intimate link between beginnings and ends.