The exhibit 287 Steps is comprised of three installations in which the human form is alchemically re-embodied, taking new forms in historically significant, elemental materials such as gold, pure powdered pigment dust, and bone white plaster. The artist’s body is incorporated into elements of the installation, echoing the excavated bodies from Pompeii, where plaster was injected into the vacant space left by human forms leaving a distinct record of the moment their bodies were transformed into ash.
Three large-scale blue pigment paintings surround the perimeter of one of the exhibition spaces as three gold leaf suits hover, suspended above the gallery floor. The suits undulate in the air, influenced by each subtle movement in the space. The exhibition also includes a series of “wind paintings”, composed of pure powdered pigment blown across canvases, creating a record of the artist’s gesture joined with the elemental force of a gust of wind. By working with fundamental elements such as wind, pigment and gold as the primary materials for the creation of 287 Steps, Albuquerque brings the interplay of natural forces to the center of the process of creation and the embodiment of form.
Photos by Brian Forrest