Julie Reneé Benda + Alexa Horochowski / Land Body Industry
This January, MFA alum Julie Reneé Benda ’16 and MFA mentor Alexa Horochowski exhibited work in Land Body Industry at the Katherine E. Nash Gallery at the University of Minnesota. The exhibition includes the work of seven Minnesota-based artists and one collaborative team. Artists included Lamia Abukhadra, Julie Reneé Benda, Leslie Grant, Alexa Horochowski, Rini Yun Keagy, Alison Malone, Monica Sheets, Nina Pessin-Whedbee, and Josh Winkler.
“Each work in the exhibition is both tethered to a specific locale and connected to a globalized tale. Whether originating in a desire for conquest, a need for survival, or consumer demands, industry generates a recurring story of transformation, loss, and at times, reinvention. Works in the exhibition traverse across time and place, recounting narratives of industry stretching from the west to east coasts of the United States and beyond.”
“Drawing from cultural histories, collective memory, and present day realities, artists in the exhibition reflect on the effects of industry as experienced by individuals, communities, and the surrounding environment.”
Minneapolis based artist Julie Reneé Benda MFA ’16 “highlights aspects of human-landscape relationships through print, text, and narrative, with an emphasis on blurring the boundaries between the disciplines of art and science, the imagined and scientific, and the Western dichotomy between nature and culture.” Influenced by a childhood in the rural Upper Peninsula of Michigan’s, Benda’s work for Land Body Industry examines her relationship to the forestland that harbors the house she grew up in and might one day inherit. Benda’s work, Inheritance, asks “Who owns the forest?” by “tracing the product of paper to its origins and reflecting on the colonial roots of property ownership along the way. The timeline that results is a physically fragmented trunk that alludes to this continuing history and mimics the ancient relics that had fallen before it.”
MFA mentor Alexa Horochowski’s “sense of geographic space has been formed by opposing landscapes—the desolate Patagonia of the Atlantic coast of Argentina where she grew up and the fertile, prairie and woods of Midwestern United States where she lives now.” Horochowski’s installations “address the interrelatedness of natural forces, globalization, culture, and matter.” Her work aspires to “an aesthetic of argument and provocation; an art that produces objects of potent agency and reflection, through which viewers are encouraged to question the sustainability of a consumer society that exacerbates inequalities and undermines our environmental resource base.”
Horochowski will be one of three artists featured in a panel discussion about the exhibition on Thursday, February 1, from 7-8pm. Land Body Industry will be open to the public until February 10.
Photography by Yi Wan.
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