SPLIT <-> SECOND
May 14 - June 18
“…science gathers knowledge faster than society gathers wisdom.” Isaac Asimov
Split <-> Second, Todd Siler’s ninth exhibition at the Feldman Gallery, includes paintings, sculptures, and drawings that take as their subject the processes of the brain and its connection with the physical laws of nature. An artist with a background in brain science, Siler transforms the gallery space into an observatory for contemplating what our eyes may not see but our intuitions can sense: life-changing events happen in less than a split-second. This rapidly changing reality makes countless critical decisions increasingly difficult especially as we respond to global challenges that impact our present-future.
Abstract paintings interpret the fluid actions of neural tissue that has been greatly magnified – revealing a hidden world of biologically-driven feelings that form and influence the complexity of our lives every second. Free-standing, seven-foot tall sculpted photographs, consisting of compressed and elongated metaphorical images, symbolize the 11-dimensional “strings” of matter that theoretically link everything in physical reality. These evocative photosculptures make the unrolled, unfolded, and enlarged strings of mind visible in order to glimpse the natural forces that shape every aspect of our world and existence.
Siler’s collage drawings take us below the cerebral cortex into the wilds of the Limbic system and lower into the heart of the “interbrain” (diencephalon) and deeper, where visceral feelings, churning emotions, and involuntary actions can drive our actions into chaos in a matter of milliseconds; instantly turning them from rational to irrational, kindness to killing. The drawings illuminate the uncertainty and unpredictability of synaptic flow, which controls our creativity, humanity, and civil society.
Split-second projections of subliminal images flash on the surfaces of various paintings. The biological roots of impulses that ignite our most self-destructive tendencies are depicted by a listless rhinoceros, butting his head against a closed iron door, evoking Ionesco’s The Theater of the Absurd. A wall-size mural repeats an endless pattern of dream-like, tessellated guns that target our desire for personal power.
In the face of its precarious future, Siler envisions the human race as the most endangered species, one that is propelled by its quest for power and love which race through our central nervous systems. He questions whether we can reverse the brain’s irrationalities and primal instincts, and wonders if we’ll be agile enough and wise enough to dodge nature’s demonstratively negative forces that can extinguish our dreams in a split<->second.
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The Feldman Gallery has represented Todd Siler since 1981. His work is in the collections of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Museum of Modern Art, and the Whitney Museum of American Art. His published works include Breaking the Mind Barrier (Simon & Schuster), Think Like a Genius (Bantam Books), and numerous articles in international art and science journals. A Forum Fellow and presenter at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, Siler holds a number of patents on a wide range of inventions. He received his PhD in Interdisciplinary Studies in Psychology and Art from MIT.
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There will be a reception May 14, 6 - 8. Gallery hours are Tuesday through Saturday, 10 - 6. Monday by
appointment. For more information, contact Sarah Paulson at (212) 226-3232 or email@example.com.