Systems Flow

Kiyomi Taylor (co-contributor and collaborator)
Julia Bozer (curator)
80WSE Gallery
Feb 2017

As a part of NYU Curitorial Collaborative

Text by Julia Bozer

In Systems Flow, works by Jóa and Kiyomi Taylor suggest that the often-oppositional binaries of the organic and the mechanical may be not only symbiotic, but interdependent. The artists’ invented spaces – man-made ecosystems and fantastical personal narratives – are as detached and independent as they are fundamentally intimate and alive.

Jóa’s fixtures and installations reimagine natural processes through interconnected glass prisms, in which painted designs and delicately arranged dioramas are thrown into flux by external forces, as electronic systems methodically alter their environmental conditions. Taylor’s paintings and stop-motion videos approach issues of identity and belonging; as inert, painted figures are animated both manually by affixed mobile limbs and mechanically through the interventions of a camera, they perform stories that ask whether it is our experiences or our emotions that linger as memories and selves.

Shared themes of circulation, evolution, and change – manifested in the pervasive flow of water – make these works not only about the experiment of living, but also about the inquisitiveness and innovation (whether from analytical study or raw feeling) needed to sustain and make sense of contemporary life. Literalizing this idea, the artists have collaborated on a handmade aquatic habitat, which houses a population of fish on the gallery floor.