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Ken Smith: Wall Flowers

October 30, 2005 - 7:00pm to December 8, 2005 - 7:00pm

Ken Smith, the landscape architect behind MoMA’s audacious artificial rooftop, brings his penchant for whimsy and irony to a new exhibit at the Knowlton Banvard Gallery. Wallflowers explores themes of randomness, order, surface, and materiality through the idiosyncratic placement of silk flowers on a 1’x 1’grid on all surfaces of the gallery. The floor, walls, and ceiling surfaces are covered and united by this pattern, which is part randomness, part conscious selectivity. A path cuts through the field, providing a space for seated contemplation and connecting the interior of Knowlton Hall to the gallery’s exterior patio.

As with the MoMA rooftop garden, the viewer is invited to consider the materiality of natural versus artificial. Furthermore, one is asked to consider the nature of the surfaces of the room and their relation to one another; the uniformity of Scogin and Elam’s concrete construction in the gallery is accentuated by Smith’s overt refusal to consider differentations according to gravity. Floor becomes wall becomes ceiling becomes wall in a disorienting play of surface.

Ken Smith: Wall Flowers

Ken Smith: Wall Flowers

Ken Smith: Wall Flowers

Ken Smith: Wall Flowers

Ken Smith: Wall Flowers

Ken Smith: Wall Flowers

Ken Smith: Wall Flowers