Katie Caron, Drosscapes, 2012. Video projection, mylar, foam, acrylic, and flock, dimensions variable.

Katie Caron


Hinterland Gallery

Drosscapes, Katie Caron’s recent installation, pirates the language of natural history dioramas to depict an eerie and toxic landscape. The story it tells is unnerving because it is hopeful: nature doesn’t wither on contact with chemical contamination, but changes into something strange, a third landscape. A tree-like form grows down from the ceiling, its elongated branches reaching into a mossy reflecting pool, where they turn day-glo red, pink, green, and white on contact with the water. Is this water nourishing or poisoned? The colors are invasive, and the white looks like pus. The pool reflects the underside of Caron’s Yggdrasil, and gazing down into the reflection, we see those glowing branches reaching directly for us, the way they would reach for the sky, were the world not upside down, or, if the tendrils were prehensile, the way they would reach for prey. The pool itself is made from sheets of mylar, bordered by a ring of moss (constructed, like the tree and tendrils, of expanding foam and flocking). An abstract film (drops of ink veining into clear fluid) projected into the pool is subsequently reflected onto the walls of the space, creating lurid catacombs of light and bathing the whole in an oddly comforting, television glow. …see the entire review in the print version of June’s Sculpture magazine.