"Human Nature"

Curated by: Narong Tintamusik

Frost Gallery

December 18, 2020 – January 16, 2021

Artists: Lynné Bowman Cravens, Molly Valentine Dierks, Karla García, Doug Land, and Madeline Ortega

Curator and Artist Talk:

Exhibition Description:

"Human/Nature," exhibiting at the Fort Worth Community Arts Center, features DFW based artists who use sculptural and immersive means to illustrate our humanity through images of nature. The floras and faunas of this world often remain still and quiet, while observing us from the distance. Curated by Narong Tintamusik, Artists Lynné Bowman Cravens, Molly Valentine Dierks, Karla García, Doug Land, and Madeline Ortega plant their own seeds containing personal life experiences. They draw nutrients from the ground touched by mankind and merge with its ever-present influences. The greenery that surrounds us is reflective of our shared physical and psychological climates. Nature serve as metaphors for societies’ past and present and the act of flowering foreshadow our future.

Emerging from the soil are environments of diverse themes and construction. Viewers will notice biomes that are absorbed with effects of time, memory, migration, identity, mortality, and vulnerability. Drawing from materials both man-made and natural, clay, printed fabrics, soil, insects, and plastic coalesce seamlessly in the works. The biological communities represented here allude to the intricate web of self and the world we live in.

Lynné Bowman Cravens

Lynné Bowman Cravens is a fine art photographer living in Texas. She received her BA in Photocommunications from St. Edward’s University, and her MFA in Photography from the University of North Texas. Cravens’ work has been featured in multiple publications such as Volume 6 of Friend of the Artist, Austere Magazine, and Voyage Dallas Magazine. Her work has been exhibited at the Bradbury Art Museum in Arkansas, Moncrief Cancer Institute in Fort Worth, during Fotofest in Houston, and in the 2018 KAUNAS Photo Festival in Lithuania. Cravens is a former member of 500X Gallery, Texas' oldest artist-run collective. She co-curated the exhibition Sequential Self: Female, Non-Binary, Trans, and Queer Voices in Comics and Zines with Iris Bechtol, the Gallery Director at Eastfield College. Cravens is currently working on a large-scale public art commission for the City of Fort Worth Public Art Program.

Molly Valentine Dierks

Skin Hunger features new futuristic miniature ecosystems by artist + designer Molly Valentine Dierks. Merging the language of technology and nature, the works play with concepts of scale in dimension and time, as in nature, where a bee or a seed carries as much import as a bear or a tree - and in contemporary culture - where what is constructed is confused with what is natural. Skin Hunger refers to the psychological phenomena that is the result of a lack of touch, heightened during the global pandemic, where we are confronted with our own vulnerabilities and tethered to one another with the same machines that engender isolation. The Skin Hunger series, made over hundreds of hours since July, explores intimacy and alienation and ambiguous entanglement - the unsettling Frankensteinian merging of the synthetic and the natural, the real and virtual, and the body with the machine.

Karla García

Karla García is a Mexican born, American-based artist that creates installations and sculptures with clay, found objects, and other materials symbolic to her Mexican heritage and migration. García’s current body of work is part of her Home and Land Project, which includes a series of cacti forms inspired by the desert landscape of her home at the U.S./Mexico border. She uses terracotta clay to create organic forms inspired by the way physical or environmental obstacles alter the growth of cacti. The cactus is part of the Mesoamerican cultural iconography as well as the Chihuahua/Texas landscape. She coil- builds each cactus sculpture to be unique, focusing on the concept of growth despite adversity. These sculptures are meant to remain unfired, creating a unique language of materiality, fragility, impermanence, individuality, and the human condition.

Doug Land

Doug Land is a sculptor who is inspired by the functions and forms of Nature. He is Currently pursuing a MFA in Sculpture from TCU. Working in multiple mediums, he is considerate of the material’s source, its function, its lifespan, and the effects of time on the work. As a result, some works are made to be permanent (static), while other works are ongoing (perpetually replenished), and some are ephemeral (like a spring day). To Quote him, “We are not above nature, and we are fools to think that we are anything more than one bad hamburger away from becoming human flavored compost!”

Madeline Ortega

Madeline Ortega is an interdisciplinary artist living in Euless, Texas who graduated with a BFA in Glass at the University of Texas at Arlington and is currently pursuing an MFA at Texas Christian University. Recently, her work has focused on the relationship between society, the environment, and how her heritage influences her personal connection to the natural world. Due to these interests, she integrates various materials with plant matter in order to create work about her background and being a product of European colonizers and Indigenous peoples. These materials often include a combination of introduced/integrated materials and traditional resources, which metaphorically represents her mixed background and allows her to explore her cultural identity.

Narong Tintamusik

Curator Bio: Narong Tintamusik is an artist, curator, and art collector based in Dallas, TX. He obtained his Biology undergraduate degree from the University of Texas at Dallas with a minor in visual arts. He has exhibited in group shows locally in Dallas, TX and beyond including New York, Canada, and Germany. He is currently a part of Artist Co-op 500X Gallery and had his first solo there in early 2020. He has been the recipient the DeGoyler Memorial Fund from the Dallas Museum of Art in 2015. Tintamusik’s curatorial and art collecting focus often lies on the ideas of identity, sexuality, Asian diaspora, figuration, fashion, love, and nature. He is an advocate for emerging artists in terms of collecting their works early in their careers. His first curatorial exhibit, Queer Me Now: The Queer Body and Gaze, showcased five young LGBTQIA artists based in the Dallas/Fort Worth area that explored the act of viewing one’s body and other’s through queer lens. The exhibit was shown at 500X Gallery and The MAC in Dallas, TX. He also started Musik, a virtual curatorial platform that offer solo exhibitions to artists without gallery representation through invitational and open calls.