Steven Pestana: PROLEGOMENON

Jul 30, 2014 4:05PM

The theme of the exhibition investigates how the scientific discipline of Complexity Theory translates into creative practice. The study of Complexity itself examines the emergence of complex forms from simple elements. A common example is DNA, which, through combinations of just four chemicals, creates a staggering diversity of living matter from plant to human form.

All of the work is in line with one of Steven’s overarching projects, Metaphysics, which considers the historical and philosophical implications of Complexity in our personal lives.

“Prolegomenon harkens back to Immanuel Kant's Prolegomena to Any Future Metaphysics That Will Be Able to Present Itself as a Science, in which he defends the possibility of the scientific study of metaphysics. My project, however, comes at it from a different angle. I feel that philosophy and the social sciences, once responsible for articulating the human condition, have surrendered too much of their essence to scientific validation. The result denies us the poetic moments of great philosophical dreaming, and worse, it also denies us of personal agency in our own everyday life. If we can't design our own philosophy, an authentic code to live by in our time, without deferring either to scientific data or religious dogma, can we ever be truly free?” 

Prolegomenon exhibits works in search of new meanings in the poetic moments of everyday life. The pieces share a cohesive aesthetic, utilizing a limited number of basic materials from gold to carbon, glass, wax, wood, stone, and moss, among others. While the materials seem simple, their compositions are latent with a concept seeded in complexity, demanding an intellectual dialogue.