Sunday, January 31, 2010

Eco Artist Exhibits at SoBay Festival

Xavier Cortada and Mayor Eugen Flinn at The Deering Estate
(My camera's battery ran out of charge so I apologize for my camera phone photos.)

Last night I went to see the SoBay art exhibit at the Deering Estate. I wish more people would have come to the opening, but I selfishly enjoyed having extra time to meet and talk to the artists. Luckily, I had a chance to meet eco artist Xavier Cortada.

Cortada had two exhibits at Deering. In the Carriage House, he had Ancestral Journeys which explores DNA links as a form of identity. Inspired by Dr Wells' work with The Genographic Project, Cortada took DNA from from some of his friends and was able to find the coordinances for where their ancient relations traveled. From his findings he created dinner plates, prints and an site-specific installation on the Deering property.

In the library, Cortada had information about his Reclamation Project. It's an urban reforestation effort where individuals can personally make a difference. Simply purchase a native tree (and a project flag); plant the tree; reclaim the land for nature by displaying the flag; then ask others to do the same. It is a fabulous sequel to his coastal habitat propagating mangroves.

Jennifer Tisthammer Natalia Reparaz

I also met Jennifer Tisthammer from The Deering Estate and artist Natalia Reparaz who was exhibiting crocheted bonnets. Whether from cancer or genetic, Reparaz examines the experience of baldness in women. Not only does she create the bonnets, but she also sculpts the heads she displays the bonnets on which are equally as interesting.

The SoBay Festival of the Arts exhibit will be on display until March 5th at The Deering Estate at Cultler in Palmetto Bay.

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