Art&Idea is pleased to announce the opening of the exhibition “It’s my Nature” by Swiss artist Regula Dettwiler at Mayflower in Barcelona, Travessera de Gracia 67, from December 19th 2013 through January 31st 2014.
Urban life is made by constructed and artificial elements which makes it difficult to recognize what really originates from nature. Perhaps the truly natural is that which is artificial. The main interest of the work of Regula Dettwiler is the artificial and constructed nature that surrounds us in our everyday lives. After having travelled the world collecting artificial flowers – orchids specifically – Dettwiler, just like any professional botanist would do, returns from her fieldwork and paints the series Orchids made in China applying watercolor and drawing just like Alexander von Humboldt had done 200 years earlier. One can perceive an ironic point of view towards an increasingly specialized and subdivided world as regards to the observation of nature. Orchids, originally appreciated as a rare and precious plant, have become a global phenomenon equivalent to any artificial and disposable good “made in China”.
Causing the reverse effect, in the series “Portraits” Dettwiler intervenes and manipulates natural plants with fabric lace. In her works we not only perceive irony but the extreme human capability to create the illusion of nature. By erasing the distance between the natural and the artificial, Dettwiler generates a fascinating new reality precisely because of its ingenious juxtaposition.
“Bird Karaoke” is an audio piece in which the artist, with a microphone and stereo in hand, invites her neighbors, acquaintances and even specialists to emulate the sound of birds and compose their own songs. Thus, the “real” songs and trills of birds are replaced by a set of more or less melodic whistles that again have to do with our mental constructions of the “natural” and the “wild”. The work also plays with memory and fiction, with the rituals and expectations of an urban space and its inhabitants.
The use, perception and manipulation of nature for human purposes appears again in “Schläft ein Lied in allen Dingen” where the artist uses a laser cutter to imitate with the means of fallen leaves drawings of Rorschach tests, widely used to assess personality traits and the human psyche. In the words of Dettwiler: “Nature is a mirror and a protective screen of our desires and fears.”
Regula Dettwiler (* 1966) is a Swiss artist currently living in Vienna. Her work has been exhibited internationally in places such as Kunstverein Friedrichshafen, Nagoya City Arts Museum and Künstlerhaus Bremen. Currently her work can be seen at the Swiss Aargauer Kunsthaus. Please, find more details at www.reguladettwiler.com
The exhibition is a project organised by Art&Idea for Mayflower. Under the working title Art&Idea Lab @ Mayflower we plan to host an ongoing exhibition series focused on current issues of contemporary art, design and architecture within the limiting confines and context of one of the leading flower stores of Spain founded in 1923.