2017

Scott Benzel • Jeff Cain • Krysten Cunningham • Erik Frydenborg • Channing Hansen
Gregory Michael Hernandez • Alice Könitz  • Karen Lofgren • Rosha Yaghmai • Margaret Wertheim

KNOWLEDGES has invited a group of artists whose practices extend from the nexus of ideas embodied by the Observatory to create new work for this site-specific exhibition. The artists involved have explored sympathetic themes in their prior works, some more overtly than others: Krysten Cunningham has created sculptural works and interactive installations exploring the Theory of Relativity and the 4th Dimension; Channing Hansen’s “Quantum Paintings” utilize mathematical algorithms to generate complex knitted patterns; Jeff Cain, operating under the moniker of The Shed Research Institute, has cultivated a series of works centered around amateur scientific research methods. Margaret Wertheim is Director of the Institute for Figuring, an organization dedicated to the investigation of poetic and aesthetic dimensions of science, mathematics and engineering. Expanding into broader cultural themes, Erik Frydenborg’s recent sculptures take inspiration from science-fiction paperback novels and aesthetics of museum displays; Alice Könitz’s sculptures often employ modern atomic age formal motifs, and her most recent project, The Los Angeles Museum of Art creates a platform for community collaboration and exchange. Scott Benzel’s work as a visual artist and composer merge the two in unique site-specific performances; Gregory Michael Hernandez has created a distinctive body of photography and sculptural work based around site and perceptions of space. Karen Lofgren’s work investigates ritual and the search for meaning, while Rosha Yaghmai’s sculptures explore a dark undercurrent of alchemy and science filtered through a distinctive West Coast aesthetic. We believe this group of artists will generate an innovative and multifaceted conversation with the Observatory through the creation of new work.

KNOWLEDGES is honored to be the recipient of one of nine inaugural artist project grants from the Mike Kelley Foundation for the Arts, whose generous support makes possible the 2017 exhibition, KNOWLEDGES at Mount Wilson Observatory.