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We’re an arts publication that explores humanity’s complicated relationship to land.

Kalan Strauss

Kalan Strauss

Statement

I am proposing a concept that sparks conversation about processed and GMO food. I feel this is relevant because it has a direct correlation between humanity and our relationship with the land. With the exponentially growing population, and countries pulling out of the Paris Treaty Agreement - Jair Bolsonaro, the newly elected president of Brazil (the home of the Amazon Rainforest a.k.a. the lungs of earth) has been vocal about following in President Trumps footsteps to leave the Paris climate accord, abolishing Brazil's environment ministry and opening up protected rainforest areas to industry. We need to start thinking about the way we grow our food and how that is affecting us.

I am making paintings that appear seemingly simple and minimal. In the background is a mapped out perspective grid that has a synthetic nature and gives off a technological feeling. The perspective grid is an entirely made up device that humans have created and have been utilizing in art and architecture for centuries now. However, there are flaws in the perspective grid— especially in a rectangular painting. I am not obeying the laws of perspective perfectly. I am altering the use of the perspective so that it is easier on the eyes and makes more sense. This is a large metaphor for the way we as humans and societal members need to rethink our food systems, how they are being implemented and how they can be changed to benefit us.

I am then going to be painting realistic images of food on top of the perspective grid. The juxtaposition between the food and the synthetic perspective grid refer to processed and genetically modified food. Further, these images of food are going to be painted in anamorphic perspective. When you view the painting from straight on, like you normally would, the image of the food will be stretched out to look unnatural. However, when you view the painting from the side, you will see the image of the food properly and it will be in the correct proportions. This is alluding to the fact that we need to look at food differently.

Bio

Kalan Strauss is an interdisciplinary artist from Los Angeles, CA who is currently studying art at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. His father is an actor and voice over artist, so Strauss was basically raised on sets and studios in Hollywood, CA. Having seen firsthand what goes into making something entirely fake appear real, his work converses with the fake aspects of our current society—similar to that of "Reality TV", or processed and GMO food.

Kayla Taylor

Kayla Taylor

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