Archival page – still under construction
Within the “Classical Section” was a stunning re-configuration of the New York Reef and Chicago Reef collectively named “The Peoples’ Reef”, conglomerated into one huge complex archipelago spread out across the floor on a pool of black felt. This amazing installation took a team of people a week to curate, led by Anna Mayer, Jemima Wyman and Christine Wertheim. Dr Axt’s huge hanging “Reefer Madness” was included, plus her beautiful new “White-icus Reef-icus, or Reefer Madness II” which is featured on the cover of the classical brochure. Also featured in this section was a new incarnation of the IFF’s “Ladies’ Silurian Atoll,” the giant, delicate ring-shaped reef that forms the core of the IFF’s classical collection and contains works by almost all our Core Contributors; the Bleached Reef (always an audience favorite), which here includes tiny new beaded crochet wonders by Nadia Severns, plus a mound of starched doilies crocheted by unknown Chinese factory workers; Marianne Middelberg’s red and white sea slug; Jill Schreier’s miniature beaded crochet corals, and many other amazements. Also on view was Trevor and Ryan Oakes wondrous hyperbolic pseudosphere woven out of pipe-cleaners; “Diatoms” an exquisite animation of traditional doillie patterns by Sarah Simons; The Chicago Cambrian Reef by Aviva Alter and companions (Jessica Stapp, Kat Ramsland, Barbara Wakesfield, Amber Reyes) showing in a new expanded version; Helen Bernasconi’s amazing 30 foot long hanging Hyperbolic Sea Snake, and Nancy Lewis’s awesome wall hanging “monsters.”
In the “Plastic Section” was The Plastic Exploding Inevitable Reef, featuring Kathleen Greco’s luscious hot-pink Jelly-Yarn “sand” (installed in the gallery’s front window); a new incarnation of the Toxic Reef starring orange coral mounds by Christine Wertheim; Helle Jorgensen’s beautiful “Rubbish Vortex” made entirely from plastic shopping bags; and a brand new Blue Reef made from New York Times wrappers by Clare O’Callaghan. A brand new grove of extraordinary white spire tube-worm forms by Evelyn Hardin (a bleached masterpiece, curated here by Ann Wertheim) was also on view, along with hanging groves of video-tape kelps by Christine; a flock of miniature plastic jellyfish made from bin-liner bags by Margaret Wertheim; and electroluminescent corals by Eleanor Kent (virtuoso “Granny-Tech”). The Midden, two years worth of Margaret and Christine’s plastic trash (curated here by Jemima Wyman) made an appearance here, alongside painted seascapes on take-out boxes by Alicia Escott.
In “The Specimen Case”, a wall of handsome standing wood and glass cases (as in a natural history museum), was a large collection of works by many of our most skilled contributors, including: Nadia Severns’ “bottle trees”; Arlene Mintzer’s miniature towers from her “Garden of Aqua Flora” Collection; tiny hand-dyed-wool corals by Dagmar Frinta; octopus forms by Helen Bernasconi; Anitra Bruce’s extraordinary knitted-wire sea forms from her “Mutation” Series; tiny beaded Byzantine marvels by Rebecca Peapples; Sue Von Ohlsen’s gorgeous, glittering beaded pseudospheres; beaded jellyfish by Vonda N. McIntyre; beaded kelps by Sarah Simons; black plastic Jelly-Yarn jellyfish flotilla by Arlene Mintzer; JellyYarn anemone Snow-Globes by Kathleen Greco (a new pop-art wonder); fluorescent pink and green Coral Garden by Ildiko Szarbo (a psychadelic marvel); and pink and green architectonic hyperbolic planes by Anitra Menning.