Geologic Intimacy, 2013
Geologic Intimacy, 2013
Geologic Intimacy comprises a series of five woodblock prints that explore the artist’s long-standing fascination with geological phenomena through a combination of graphic text and visuals. One of the prints, for example, is titled We Form Geology. This inscription refers to a remarkable discovery: the idea that we, as humans, also house a collection of stones. Body stones such as gallstones and kidney stones blur the boundary between the biological and the geological. In the body, each stone is a biological entity, but once out of the body it belongs to the realm of geology. We are like volcanoes, producing new landmass on a micro scale.
Halperin has a highly experimental approach to print-based processes, which is particularly visible in this project. First, a series of her original drawings were used to make laser-cut wooden forms at the Dundee Contemporary Arts Print Studio. These forms were submerged in the Blue Lagoon, an active geothermal pool in Iceland, where they were left to rapidly encrust in new silica mineral deposits over the course of 18 days, creating mineral sculptures. Returning to the DCA Print Studio, Halperin cut a similar set of woodblocks and used these to make the series of large-scale relief prints.
Ilana Halperin (US)
Ilana Halperin is an artist, originally from New York, and currently based in Glasgow. Her work deals with geological intimacy, vivacity, and the uncanny fact that something as apparently inert and certain as stone was once liquid, airborne, ash and alive. For over twenty years her work has explored the relationship between geology and daily life. She has boiled milk in a 100 degree Celsius sulphur spring; talked with geologists inside a lava tube inhabited by life-affirming bacteria; formed sculptures in caves and hot springs; spent time with geology collections formed inside the body; and held the Allende Meteorite, the oldest known object in the solar system.
In her practice, Halperin works with earth scientists, in natural history collections, in the studio and in remote geological field environments. Recent solo exhibitions include Geologic Intimacy (Yu no Hana), Fujiya Gallery, Beppu, Japan; The Library, National Museum of Scotland; Steine, Berliner Medizinhistorisches Museum der Charité; Hand Held Lava, Schering Stiftung, Berlin and Physical Geology (slow time), Artists Space, New York. She was Artist-Curator of geology for Shrewsbury Museum and Art Gallery, in the birthplace of Charles Darwin. The Library of Earth Anatomy, a permanent commission at The Exploratorium in San Francisco has recently opened. Schering Stiftung, Berlin published a monograph of her work entitled New Landmass. Ilana shares her birthday with the Eldfell volcano in Iceland.