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Mining Industries: Eleven new works by American artist Norwood Viviano on view at Heller Gallery
Norwood Viviano, Cities: Departure and Deviation,2011 (detail). Glass/mixed media, site specific. Photo: Cathy Carver.

NEW YORK, NY.- Heller Gallery presents Mining Industries, their second solo exhibition of work by American artist Norwood Viviano. Several pieces from the artist’s installation Cities: Departure & Deviation, shown at Heller in 2011, were selected to be shown at the upcoming 14th Biennale (6/7-11/23 2014) in Venice curated by architect Rem Koolhaas.

Mining Industries is comprised of eleven works Viviano cast using LiDAR data and rapid prototyping, showing aerial views of sites in the United States related to three cities -- Detroit, Houston & Seattle -- and the iconic industries associated with their evolution.

Superimposing three-dimensional cast glass models of each site over historical images layered chronologically downward between glass blocks below, Viviano contrasts the present-day conditions with important periods in the sites’ industrial past. The topographically accurate, dimensional surface somewhat obscures our ability to ‘read’ the suspended images, providing the viewer fertile ground to contemplate the societal, political, cartographic & human blurring of memory.

Art historian Susie Silbert, whose essay accompanies the exhibitions, writes: “Today maps appear as impartial arbiters of the surrounding world. But theorists such as David Turnbull maintain that ‘maps should be seen as “knowledge spaces” constructed by specialists—politicians, scientists and geographers, mathematicians and cartographers—in service of a particularized point of view.’ The concept of the map as a “knowledge space” unifying disparate technologies in order to advance contemplation of a specific set of ideas is at the heart of Norwood Viviano’s Mining Industries.

Norwood Viviano received a BFA from Alfred University and MFA in Sculpture from the Cranbrook Academy of Art. His work was most recently featured in Sprawl, an exhibition at the Houston Center for Contemporary Craft. He has been an Artist-in-Residence at the Royal College of Art, London, UK, Ox-Bow School of the Arts, Saugatuck, MI, the Museum of Glass in Tacoma, WA and the Kohler Company in Sheboygan, WI. His work is in the collections of the Museum of Decorative Arts, Prague, Czech Republic; John Michael Kohler Arts Center, Sheboygan, WI and the Museum of Glass, Tacoma, WA, as well as in private collections. A feature article on Viviano’s work is scheduled for the Spring issue of Bloomberg Pursuits.

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