by Allison Putnam
Movement, adjustment, evaluation, modification. The contemporary experience is shaped by a constant tension between our natural and constructed systems of life. This opposition demands flexibility of both systems and change is inevitable, if not fundamental. Drift is an exhibit of Meghan Kerr and Gregory Davis’ work at Fill in the Blank gallery on Chicago’s north side. Meghan Kerr’s sculptures and Greg Davis’ paintings explore change and movement in spaces, both constructed and natural.
The two artists on display both address systems at play in the physical world. Meghan Kerr’s work conflates natural phenomena with artificial systems. Her installations and sculptures mock the structures of organisms and natural growth producing work that functions to blur the line between real nature and an image.
The Erosion pieces are functioning systems that cycle water through constructed landscapes of raw porcelain. Through the duration of the exhibit the mud will move. It will dry in patches and flood in others. The changes in the mud reference the patterns of change in our natural environment. In the midst of concrete-locked Chicago the sculptures feel like isolated gestures that remove the viewer from life on the street and place him at birds-eye level looking down onto geological formations and a history of land and life.
In line with the confusion of fictive space and reality, Greg Davis’s paintings depict landscapes and images of cities that seem to cite existing structures. However, the architecture is uninhabited and structurally mysterious. Scale is in flux. Orientation is in flux. The sites depicted look like the ruins of highly conceptual and theoretic architecture.
Davis’ paintings and Kerr’s sculpture look to movement as a unifier of the natural and the built environment. The structures that the modern lifestyle demands situate themselves as immobile and unbreakable, but the work in Drift argues for a broader lens through which to view the world.
The exhibit is on view at Fill in the Blank Gallery until May 1 at 5038 N. Lincoln Ave. Chicago IL 60625.