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Philadelphia based artists Nadia Hironaka & Matthew Suib https://www.hironakasuib.com/about have created a new immersive film and installation for Rowan University Art Gallery set in a microcosmic forest inspired by the pine barrens that dot Southern NJ. Like many, the duo found refuge and release throughout the Covid-19 pandemic hiking and foraging in these remote, natural landscapes. As America’s social fabric frayed deeply in recent months and years, they considered forest ecosystems in terms of symbiotic and collaborative relationships that sustain coexistence and community.
In this project, the forest has been condensed and transplanted to a terrarium in the artists’ studio. Twelve cubic feet of pines, shrubs, ferns, moss, fungus and carnivorous plants are reflected infinitely in the terrarium’s mirrored walls and captured with a motion-controlled camera and specialized macro lens that dramatically shift the scale and perspective of this miniature landscape. Hironaka & Suib transform this microcosmic film set into the home of chimeric forest dwellers who consider themes of precarity, mutualism and collaborative survival.
Nadia Hironaka & Matthew Suib work collaboratively on films, videos, public artworks and immersive installations spanning over a decade, often extending their collaboration to include other artists, musicians and composers. Their practice embraces research and experimentation, encompassing historical fact, popular fiction and creative speculation. Working across moving-image culture and mass media idioms, they build counter-mythologies, alternate or parallel realities, and forward-looking visions of the world around us. They are recipients of several honored awards including a 2015 Guggenheim Foundation Fellowship, Pew Fellowships in the Arts and Fellowships from CFEVA and Pennsylvan ia Council on the Arts. Their work has been widely exhibited both domestically and abroad at venues including, Fondazione MAXXI (Rome), New Media Gallery (Vancouver), The Institute of Contemporary Art (Philadelphia), UCLA Hammer Museum, PS1/MoMA, Philadelphia Museum of Art and Arizona State University Art Museum. They have been artists-in-residence at the Headlands Center for the Arts, the Banff Centre, Marble House Project and the Millay Colony for Arts. Matthew Suib is co-founder of Greenhouse Media and Nadia Hironaka serves as a professor and department chair of film and video at the Maryland Institute College of Art. Hironaka & Suib are represented by Locks Gallery. The couple, along with their daughter and one cat reside in South Philly.
Field Companion was produced with support from Rowan University Art Gallery and from Locust Projects, Miami. Additional support is provided by New Jersey State Council on the Arts. Music by Green-House, courtesy of Leaving Records.
Also enjoy the screening of Moon Viewing Platform