It is a pleasure to present the inaugural exhibition of Room482 as a continuation of glaze, extending Tristan Higginbothom and Zach Seeger’s shared attention towards the avian community as an invitation to look closer. The works on view represent a vicarious introspection, an intimate reminder of our common responsibility in reviving a more acute sensibility for noticing, within our immediate and extended surroundings.
This communal predilection can be seen in Tristan Higginbotham’s talisman-like sculptures. Borrowing recipes from her profession of bird rehabilitation, Higginbotham infuses lard and seed into constructed vessels of sea shells and turtle scutes, presenting bird feeders as aesthetic offerings. The same attentive motivations are present in Zach Seeger’s 9 x 12 inch painted observations of birds, recording each as they eat, nest, perch, and pause at various feeders and homes he’s built for them around his property in upstate NY.
Our century has seen explosive human and technological expansion coincide with unparalleled ecological catastrophe. What models should we consider to reroute our current patterns of care, pleasure, and sensing of danger? In her foreseeing essays concerning the Anthropocene, Donna Haraway suggests the tiny hollowed out negative spaces or the shell that could hold some food or water that could be shared. Rebuilding a kind of sociality with communities making their lives together, cultivating a love of place and a love of home. It is clear that how humanity exerts effort towards revitalizing and fortifying ecosystems will ultimately decide the fate of all living things on this Earth. In 2021, there is nothing more necessary than tending to the fissure and injury that has accrued all around us.