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Time as Landscape

Xaviera Simmons (b. 1974), Red Number Two, 2016, chromogenic color print. Courtesy of the artist and David Castillo Gallery.

Xaviera Simmons (b. 1974), Red Number Two, 2016, chromogenic color print. Courtesy of the artist and David Castillo Gallery.

By Suzanne Cohen

In recent decades, contemporary art has crossed paths with science. “Time as Landscape,” which opens September 29 at the Cornell Fine Art Museum in Winter Park, Fla., is inspired by the creative strategies of a group of artists who question, describe and seek understanding about the subject of time-as scientific fact, relative experience and aesthetic archive. The exhibition is curated by Amy Galpin and Abigail Ross Goodman.

Visitors will appreciate works by Darren Almond, Lucas Arruda, Rosa Barba, Luis Camnitzer, Julia Dault, Tacita Dean, Noah Doely, Spencer Finch, Camile Henrot, On Kawara, Tom LaDuke, Julie Mehretu, Trevor Paglen, Howardena Pindell, Thiago Rocha Pitta, Dawn Roe, Tomas Saraceno, Xaviera Simmons, Sarah Sze, Sara VanDerBeek and Lawrence Weiner.

Rosa Barba (b. 1972), The Color Out of Space, 2015, 5 colored glass filters, steel base, HD video, color, sound, 36 min. Installation view at MIT List Visual Arts Center, Cambridge MA, 2015. © Rosa Barba, VG Bild-Kunst. Photo: Peter Harris.

Rosa Barba (b. 1972), The Color Out of Space, 2015, 5 colored glass filters, steel base, HD video, color, sound, 36 min. Installation view at MIT List Visual Arts Center, Cambridge MA, 2015. © Rosa Barba, VG Bild-Kunst. Photo: Peter Harris.

The topic is timely, as ongoing discussions of STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, the Arts and Mathematics) curriculum reverberate in American schools. The preciousness of time is also amplified by growing concerns about the environment and global mortality, from a macro perspective to a micro vantage point, as individuals struggle to make sense of a faster-paced, connected world where everything runs on the 24-hour news cycle and the Internet offers an endless network of hyperlinks.

Richard Mosse (b. 1980), Idomeni Camp, Greece, 2016, digital c-print on metallic paper. The Alfond Collection of Contemporary Art, Cornell Fine Arts Museum, Rollins College © Richard Mosse. Courtesy of the artist and Jack Shainman Gallery, New York.

Richard Mosse (b. 1980), Idomeni Camp, Greece, 2016, digital c-print on metallic paper. The Alfond Collection of Contemporary Art, Cornell Fine Arts Museum, Rollins College © Richard Mosse. Courtesy of the artist and Jack Shainman Gallery, New York.

“Time as Landscape” provides a framework for interdisciplinary engagement. The Cornell Museum’s contemporary collection, as well as the Smith Watch Key Collection, are positioned in a new context to inspire discussion about historic objects and their relationship to the contemporary. Recent acquisitions of work by Mehretu, Saraceno, Camnitzer and Richard Mosse are exhibited for the first time. The Alfond Inn, the Museum’s satellite contemporary space, will simultaneously unveil a newly commissioned, site-specific installation by Saraceno.

Thiago Rocha Pitta (b. 1980), Seascape with Cianobacteria, 2017, fresco. © Thiago Rocha Pitta. Courtesy of the artist and Marianne Boesky Gallery, New York and Aspen. Photo: Jason Wyche.

Thiago Rocha Pitta (b. 1980), Seascape with Cianobacteria, 2017, fresco. © Thiago Rocha Pitta. Courtesy of the artist and Marianne Boesky Gallery, New York and Aspen. Photo: Jason Wyche.

One of the most remarkable pieces is The Color Out of Space (2015) by the Berlin-based Rosa Barba. To create it, she engaged in a yearlong collaboration with scientists at the Hirsch Observatory at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. The resulting installation, with its film and sculptural components, is a meditation on scientific inquiry and an interrogation of geologic time in human terms. Barba’s work is one of several significant loans included in this presentation. Among the new acquisitions, the photograph Idomeni Camp, Greece by the New York-based Mosse stands out. With a military-grade infrared camera, Mosse documents a temporary refugee camp. The resulting photograph, produced with a telephoto lens that senses heat, presents a haunting document of the plight of refugees and the lack of permanency in their lives.

Julie Mehretu (b. 1970), Epigraph, Damascus, 2016, photogravure, sugar lift aquatint, spit bite aquatint, open bite on Hahnemühle Bütten 350 gr. The Alfond Collection of Contemporary Art, Cornell Fine Arts Museum, Rollins College © 2017 Julie Mehretu. Courtesy of the artist.

Julie Mehretu (b. 1970), Epigraph, Damascus, 2016, photogravure, sugar lift aquatint, spit bite aquatint, open bite on Hahnemühle Bütten 350 gr. The Alfond Collection of Contemporary Art, Cornell Fine Arts Museum, Rollins College © 2017 Julie Mehretu. Courtesy of the artist.

“Time as Landscape” will be on view through December 31 at Cornell Fine Arts Museum at Rollins College | 1000 Holt Ave. Winter Park, Fla 32789 |  Phone: 407 646 2526 | www.rollins.edu/cfam.

Suzanne Cohen is an arts writer based in Orlando, Fla.