Issue #20 ‘Elephant’ has arrived, you can buy a copy from our online store or subscribe now. Available April 29…
We move through time and so do the objects that surround us. As time passes our precious things and ambitions decay and deteriorate, there’s disorder and an inability to put things “right”. Perfection is an impossibility in this transient state we call life.
Lori Nix constructs hand-made worlds from her living room, complex dioramas sculpted out of foam board, paint, plaster and wood. She lives with power tools scattered throughout her apartment, and a chop saw under her kitchen table. Her worlds, as small as 50 centimetres and as large as 182 centimetres in diameter, take time; nine years to build The City, a series of deserted architectural interiors, which she calls a “safe space to think about larger ideas”, a “meditative space that’s full of possibilities.”
In Lori’s world, ceilings fold in to reveal the sky, creeping vines haunt walls, and shelves of books – lined up with an alert expectancy symbolic of our quest to seek, to learn, to make sense of it all – quietly transition towards dust.
Like the 18th century Romanticists, Lori celebrates the sublime in untamed nature. When we view The City and place ourselves in the scene we experience emotions like horror and terror, the “sublime experience” for Romanticists. We see ourselves, insignificant within nature, the universe and time, our world globes, maps and science tools pitiful in nature’s powerful presence.
“While sombre at first glance, these details reveal the optimism, ambitions, and even humour of the previous inhabitants,” notes Lori. “The walls are deteriorating, the ceilings are falling in, the structures barely stand, yet Mother Nature is slowly taking them over. These spaces are filled with flora, fauna and insects, reclaiming what was theirs before man’s encroachment.”