In 2009 and again in 2011, artist Jessica Rath visited the Cornell/USDA Agricultural Experiment Station in Geneva New York, one of the most important centers of apple cultivation in North America. The result is a startling exhibition of porcelain pieces inspired by what she saw there. Over at Edible Geography, you will find this wonderful interview Nicola Twilley conducted with Rath about the idea for her exhibition, the process, and the results. As Twilley explains:
“Rath’s original goal was to create slip cast porcelain sculptures that embodied the incredible — and now endangered — range of the apple’s aesthetic potential; revealing the charms and qualities it has developed through co-evolution with humans as a reflection of our own desires and will. During her visit, however, Rath also became fascinated by the conjoined twin of Forsline’s apple archive: Brown’s speculative sisters and successful, selected clones, which she photographed as bare-branched trees against a white backdrop.”
Entitled take me to the apple breeder, the show is closing at the Pasadena Museum of California Art this weekend. Let’s hope it tours to other locations. Twilley’s edited interview is available on Edible Geography and cross-posted on Venue, and is well worth reading. I have included of few of Rath’s Geneva station photographs, and the porcelain pieces inspired by them below.