Heller Gallery is pleased to present Poisonous Minerals, our third solo exhibition by American artist Laura Kramer whose work we first introduced in 2014.
The exhibition takes its title from an eponymous sonnet by English poet and cleric John Donne titled If Poisonous Minerals and If That Tree. Kramer sees the poem as setting a stage for her current body of work. Donne’s views on nature and the natural world as both good and evil gained acceptance during a time when serious collecting first took root in the early Renaissance period as noble families began to create and display cabinets of curiosities combining artifacts of medicine, science and religion.
Kramer’s encrusted drips and sinuous snake-like forms are the most elemental combination of breath and gravity formed during the glassblowing process. Embellished with crystals of colored glass rods these sculptures mimic and question the hybridity of natural and man made materials. Dazzling yet grotesque, Kramer’s pieces seem to defy accepted systems of classification and explore the liminal.
Artist and designer Laura Kramer holds BFA and MFA degrees from the Rhode Island School of Design and Ohio State University as well as an MA in Anthropology & Material Culture from Columbia University, where she also studied archeology. She has worked on excavations in the Netherlands Antilles, cast bronze at Paolo Solari’s Arcosanti, has been an artist-in-residence at Kitengela Hot Glass in Kenya, and an assistant to acclaimed Danish glassblower Tobias Mohl. Kramer’s pieces and installations have been featured in Elle Décor, New York Times Magazine’s Home Issue, InStyle, Architectural Digest as well as American Craft Magazine.