51
51
BROWN, ROGAN
CONTROL X3/18, 2018
Estimate
5,0007,000
LOT SOLD. 13,750 USD
JUMP TO LOT
51
BROWN, ROGAN
CONTROL X3/18, 2018
Estimate
5,0007,000
LOT SOLD. 13,750 USD
JUMP TO LOT

Details & Cataloguing

History of Science & Technology, Including the Nobel Prize and Papers of Richard P. Feynman

|
New York

BROWN, ROGAN
CONTROL X3/18, 2018
Hand and laser cut paper with plastic petri dishes, in a custom shadow box, (28 x 43 1/2 inches).
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Catalogue Note

Control X3/18 presents a variety of microbiological organisms separated and contained inside an array of transparent domes. One of the domes has been breached and from it spills a swirling mass of bacteria. On a simple level this sculpture plays with our fear of scientific research. Public attitudes to science are strikingly bipolar, on the one hand we see it as the motor of human progress potentially solving all our problems and advancing and enhancing us as a species; on the other we see the terrible effects that science can wreak upon our world: nuclear and biological weapons, pollution, climate change, environmental devastation.. This piece therefore contains a warning, that we have to beware our own hubris and perhaps accept that we can never be fully in control of nature, something always escapes us, exceeds us...

Control X3/18  and Magic Circle Variation (Lot 50)  are companion pieces that explore different ways of approaching and representing nature or, more specifically in this case, of representing the Human Microbiome which is their common point of inspiration. Magic Circle Variation offers a holistic vision of a microbiological-bacterial colony coexisting in harmony, which is symbolized by the circle itself. On the other hand Control X3/18, using the same repertoire of motifs, presents the scientific vision of nature which works through the creation of taxonomies, separating and isolating individual elements of the colony for analysis through control experiments. The limitations of this approach are figured by the rupture of the Petri domes and the escape of the organisms they contain. This reflects the fact that scientists are unable to analyze the biome through such taxonomies because a) they are unable to successfully isolate and culture the bacteria in Petri dishes (most species of bacteria cannot be cultured in this way, E.coli is an exception) and b) the biome operates through an incredibly complex system of interaction and symbiosis and can only be fully understood through an analysis of these interrelations.

The excess of detail in these sculptures therefore acts as a visual metaphor for the excess of data in nature which constantly subverts and limits our attempts to fully comprehend it.

History of Science & Technology, Including the Nobel Prize and Papers of Richard P. Feynman

|
New York