Teresita Fernández: Elemental offers visitors an unparalleled opportunity to experience numerous works by one of the nation’s leading contemporary artists. The exhibition tells the story of a creator who, through her practice, reflects and challenges perceptions of the natural world and the U.S. social order, and asks viewers to contemplate their roles with those spaces.The retrospective will introduce visitors to the artist’s large-scale sculptures, installations, and mixed media works that merge formal and conceptual aspects of her practice through the use of natural materials and the historic genre of landscape to reinterpret relationships between nature, history, and identity.
Teresita Fernández: Elemental spans the mid-1990s to the present, offering a comprehensive view of Fernández’s career to date. Featured works include Untitled (1997), a mirrored floor sculpture that references voyeurism but encourages self-reflection from those within the structure, and Fire (2005), which uses thousands of hand-dyed silk threads to construct flame patterns that become animated by light and air as viewers move around the sculpture.
The exhibition will also showcase the artist’s most recent body of work, in which she contrasts the sublime nature of traditional landscapes with the current politically charged climate of the United States. Both Fire (America) 5 (2017) and Charred Landscape (America) (2017) underscore Fernández’s reinterpretation of depictions of the land, presenting a contemporary American landscape marred by violence, climate change, and warring ideologies that stands in stark contrast to the idealized vision of the American dream.
Based in New York, Fernández, who was born in 1968 in Miami to Cuban parents, is renowned for her prominent public installations and experiential sculptures. Through her practice, she explores perception and the psychology of looking, regularly manipulating light and space to create immersive, intimate, and evocative experiences. Using a range of materials including silk, graphite, onyx, mirrors, glass, and charcoal, her minimalist yet substantive artworks evoke landscapes, the elements, and various natural wonders, including meteor showers, cloud formations, and the night sky.