Exhibition: Chlorine Tidal Wave, Field Projects August 8th - 31st, 2019 / by Mark Mann

Woman with Giant Shark, 2019

Woman with Giant Shark, 2019

Field Projects is pleased to present Chlorine Tidal Wave curated by Tess Sol Schwab featuring works sourced from the Summer Open Call by: Corinne Beardsley, Dorielle Caimi, Alexander Churchill, Alexandra Evans, Mark Mann, Seren Morey, Chris Musina, Stacey Rowe, Benjamin Siekierski.

The exhibition takes summer entertainment news as its starting point- the endless coverage of “Chance the Snapper” (the alligator found in a Chicago park), shark attacks, and deadly flesh-eating bacteria in our beaches. These sensationalized stories aim to both delight and terrify. Using the same language as scary movies, the headlines ask, “Is it safe to go in the water?” and frame the deadly beast as an enemy to be vanquished. We cheer when the gator is removed from the pool and pat ourselves on the back that it is rehomed in an animal sanctuary. With the segment over we can move on to other pressing issues- like who is the next contestant voted off Love Island. Yet, the real looming presence of environmental destruction remains.

The artists in Chlorine Tidal Wave tackle this undercurrent of unease with humor and beauty. Stacey Rowe’s Florida Man defends himself with a plunger against reptiles emerging from his toilet. Jacob Banholzer, Ben Siekierski, Mark Mann, and Chris Musina depict sharks and alligators finding new homes in swimming pools and within our gallery walls. Alexandra Evans and Dorielle Caimi’s mermaids look morose or raging mad. In Alexander Churchill’s pool the water is gone and our domestic animals have gone feral, while Seren Morey’s biomorphic works and Corrine Beardsley’s fossils point to possible grim futures. Together, the works in the show call for a longer look at the changes to our climate, the effects on nature, and an acknowledgment of a much bigger danger than just a gator in a swimming pool.

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