• Galaxy M81 [photo: Leo Daedalus]
  • Galaxy M81 [photo: Leo Daedalus]
  • Galaxy M81 (detail) [photo: Leo Daedalus]
  • Galaxy M81 (detail) [photo: Leo Daedalus]
  • Study for Galaxy M81 (2015) [photo: Leo Daedalus]
  • Study for Galaxy M81 (2015) [photo: Leo Daedalus]
  • Study for Galaxy M81 (2015) [photo: Leo Daedalus]
  • Galaxy M81 study (2013)
  • Galaxy M81 study (2013, detail)
  • Galaxy M81 study (2013, detail)

Artist's Gallery Statement

Galaxy M81 and Study for Galaxy M81 (both 2015), my current, site-specific installations for On Capturing Transient Bodies at ArtsWest, are based in my fascination with space exploration and with the new and spectacular imagery from the Hubble Telescope.

Right now Curiosity Rover is exploring Mars while Rosetta’s lander module, Philae, is hanging out on comet 67P, currently situated some 118,000,000 miles from earth. Fifty-seven years after Sputnik first orbited the earth, we humans are exploring deep space physically as well as through orbiting telescopes. The image of Galaxy M81, from which the wall-based installation and study were derived, is freely available on the HubbleSite. I want my artworks to reflect some of the joy and wonder of these achievements.

In my art practice I develop metaphorical narratives of biological and natural interconnectivity to remind viewers of our deep roots in the natural world. I also like to bring viewers’ attention to the way perception is embodied, rather than restricted to vision and the intellect. We humans see and feel through physical bodies that evolved in the natural world over millennia. I hope to elicit a fuller perceptual response from visitors by employing natural metaphors and by the scale of my artworks. The ordinary, non-hierarchical materials that I prefer cling to the walls, while shadows and reflections add a sense of layering and depth. Each viewer’s experience of my work will be unique and mutable.

— Ingrid Lahti, 2015