Untitled (Bonsai), 2013 by Martin Roth at Louis B. James

Untitled (Bonsai), 2013

Untitled (Bonsai), 2013

Thanks to Brooklyn-based multidisciplinary artist Krista Dragomer for the heads-up on this neat show by Martin Roth on now at the Louis B. James Gallery in New York.

“For his second solo exhibition at Louis B. James, Martin Roth presents a new installation, Untitled (Bonsai). The work consists of a single bonsai tree in the upper level of the gallery space, situated within of a complex soundscape orchestrated uniquely for the houseplant.

“For his new installation, Roth takes meticulous care to provide the bonsai plant with the ideal soundscape in which to grow. Two speakers pointed at the bonsai emit a live feed of a chorus of animals and insects. The artist uses environmental sounds, provided by pet shop creatures, to create a simulated habitat for a tree that—due to its constant need of care—could be considered nearer to a pet than a plant.

“Above all, Roth’s work accentuates the multi-layered relationship between animals and plants, as well as their connection to human culture, while delicately playing with the balance of nature and artificiality. Roth’s work consistently renegotiates the boundary between art and life, inside and outside, and nature and culture, bringing to mind the musical installations of Céleste Boursier-Mougenot, the chance-based operations of John Cage, and the metaphorical parables of Francis Alÿs.”

The show runs until April 13.

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