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The Scale of Perception:
A Conversation with Katrín Sigurdardóttir

by Jan Garden Castro

Icelandic artist Katrín Sigurdardóttir uses scale to explore notions of land, space, and memory as well as the body’s place in a world that seems to be shrinking. Her popular High Plane V installation at P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center (2006) allowed two viewers at a time to climb tall ladders and insert their heads into an imaginary glacial vista. Each head appeared gigantic in relation to the miniature icescape. The “Haul” series features 20 small shipping boxes that open and unfold to offer portable, generic landscapes.

The works in Sigurdardóttir’s two recent exhibitions—dystopic stacked and shelved landscapes and stacked miniature cities at the Greenberg Van Doren Gallery and a miniature guard tower imprisoned in its own cube at Eleven Rivington Gallery—use scale as well as interior and exterior space to study the receding geosphere, dilemmas involving space, and how we humans may be losing touch with ourselves.

The Green Grass of Home, 1998.
Plywood, hobby-modeling materials, canvas, and hardware, installation view.

Image courtesy Eleven Rivington, NY, and Greenberg Van Doren Gallery, NY.


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