Picture the mad scientist with Bunsen-burned hair and lab coat askew, hands fluttering with revelation. And picture too the mad artist, unwashed and peering bleary eyes into a handmade landscape emerging from the page/easel/pixels. Now merge those two characters; training and tools differ, but their thrill of discovery aligns exactly. The Weird Science group show, which Richard Levy Gallery extended through Jan. 26, presents what can happen when artists seize a scientist's sense of investigation and turn it toward the natural world. Marina Zurkow's “Mesocosm” aims it at a slice of Texas desert, drawn and animated on a flat screen so the viewer can watch it plied by wildlife—and marred by man's machinations. The “Cosmos” installation by Kamila Wozniakowska uses New Mexico as stand-in for the orignial setting of a Victorian-era metaphysical detective novel, to humorous and elegantly dark effect. Bubbling against one wall are Pinar Yoldas' “Speculative Biologies,” heavy jars of invented, water-based specimens that manage to both titillate and slightly unsettle the viewer. Scope more details at levygallery.com. Richard Levy Gallery • Fri Dec 21 • 11 am-4 pm • FREE • ALL-AGES! • View on Alibi calendar
Richard Levy Gallery
Last Saturday Arts Crawl
John Chervinsky's Frames of Reference is an exquisite contemplation on the interplay between scientific principles and their worldly manifestations. In one of the series' subsets, Studio Physics, the Harvard applied physics professor went to great lengths for his final photographic prints. Chervinsky set up studio still lifes, then photographed portions of them. He mailed those photos to a painting factory in China and incorporated the reproductions of his photos by anonymous artists back into the still lifes. Elements of decay (a bowl of rotten bananas half covered by a painted “before” version of the ripe fruit) exhibit the enigma of impermanence in a visually straightforward way.