Responding to sites around the world through works
created in site specific installation, intervention, ephemeral sculpture,
video, sound, web, permanent site-specific sculpture, photography, printmaking,painting
Welcoming opportunities to work in different geographic regions &
locations in the world, creating site-specific works in response to the
on the photos below to go to each page
the link above to go to 90 cellular images - once the page loads, you
will be able to open each image in its own window
- Astro/Cell Video Projection:
Cellstars video is projected at 11' across on the gallery wall so that
the cellular views (human and botanical) are the same size as the astrophotography
of galaxies -- the viewer is dwarfed by the size of the images
- Site Specific Intervention:
the Starfloats site (download map below). During the day the Starfloats
are visible and appear slightly yellow as they
are painted with phosphorescence inside and store the suns energy during
daylight. At dusk they will softly glow
for 2-2.5 hours after the sun goes down.
Map to Starfloats site
Gallery Installation views:
Stations with CellStars video in background
Il Soo Kyung McLaurin
Prints with Viewing Stations & CellStars video in background
image below to order a print....
space with microscopes, aerial photos, maps, website with links to space
and biology sites facilitated by Nan Capogna
Il Soo Kyung McLaurin
articles on theFinn Slough Project:
Straight, Robin Laurence
Richmond News, Michelle Hopkins
Review, Mary Gazetas
Space, Biology, Science, Readings
Art Gallery, Richmond, BC
Finn Slough is a bio-diverse
area that not only shelters eagles, herons, ducks, muskrats, raccoons,
and frogs but also the people who have chosen to live in the tidal wetlands,
living in harmony with, and by their presence, protecting one of the last
tidal villages on the West Coast. I have tried to find a balance in how
I would normally work at a site - in virtual seclusion with not many,
if any, other people around (unless Im teaching a workshop on environmental
art where we work in a small group) and the Slough being a community.
I have tried to be aware of issues of privacy, being sensitive to bringing
an awareness to viewers of the site and how its connected to a much
larger whole. I hope through this new work to bring the viewer an awareness
of not only Finn Slough, but also the larger world and their connection
to it, while sparking a chord of magic, of wonder, of awe. I believe that
when we can remember how it felt to be a child, when we can tap into our
earliest memories of discovery, when we can remember that we are not separate
and apart from all other things in this world and universe, then, and
only then, can we begin to create much needed and long-lasting changes
in the environment. Once we can honour a site, a village, a country, a
world, how can we not protect it?
Much of my previous work is based on my working intuitively with site
energies, through dreams, impressions, my personal understanding of place
and unseen connections to place. I began to wonder how I could bring this
awareness of being connected to sites, to the world, to everything around
us in a visually provable manner. I am not a scientist, but
I am very interested in many different areas of science. I decided to
explore the site on a micro/macro level, beginning with microscopy work
and then onto astronomy. I was interested in discovering where we humans,
the natural world and the stars begin to resemble each other...at what
point do we appear the same and not different from each other. I have
always been astonished that we carry stardust within our bodies, as well
as the dust of our ancestors and every living being that has inhabited
this earth. We are physically of this Earth, this Universe, bound by the
makeup of our physical bodies.
Mathematics has always been a factor in my work, from Fibonacci spirals
to golden rectangles and spirals to the significance of individual numbers.
The Finn Slough Project is based on circles and the numbers 33, 66 and
99. There are 33 cellular images, 66 viewing circles that contain cells
and natural materials and 99 glass balls at the site. The number 33 is
a master number and symbolizes truth; 66 represents the cosmic mind and
99 illumination and universal awareness.
Cellprints: I did not know what to expect when I began working
in the Biology Lab at Langara
College - Id seen cellular images but they had been taken by
experienced biologists. I am not a scientist nor a trained biologist.
I was in awe when I began to see the images emerging from within each
of the slides I prepared. I took over 600 photographs during 25 hours
of lab time -- from these images 33 are presented as part of this exhibition.
I did not use stains when preparing the slides, I wanted to preserve the
actual colour and depth of the cells I was looking at. Most of the images
were taken at 100x and then zoomed into further with a digital camera.
These 33 prints are not intended to be seen as scientific slides - although
each image provides a glimpse into the world of cells. It was amazing
to me that cellular images often resonated and repeated the structure
found in the original parent sample.
Anthropologist Jeremy Narby writes in the Cosmic Serpent that cells communicate
with each other. When I read this I wondered if this communication on
a cellular level is what I was feeling when I was in the lab, completely
in awe, often with tears in my eyes, feeling something visceral that I
couldnt quite put into words...were my cells in communication with
the cells I was observing? I like to think so. In Mind Over Genes: The
New Biology, Dr. Bruce Lipton writes that our physical bodies are composed
of fifty trillion single cells. Dr. Masaru Emoto, author of Hidden Messages
in Water, has proven that our thoughts and words can affect the shape
and size of water crystals. If our thoughts can change the crystals in
water, and we contain trillions of cells, how are our thoughts affecting
everything around us -- water, cells, air, the physical world?
Cellstars: Astrophotographer Chuck
Webb, with the Fraser Valley Astronomical Society, gave me permission
to use his photographs for the Finn Slough Project. Cellstars, the video
projection, utilizes cellular and astro images that breathe in and out
of each other. The cellular images are from plants and humans and the
star galaxies from thousands of light years away - at times its
hard to know which you are looking at.
Viewing Stations: I wanted to share with viewers the natural materials
that the cellular images originate from - some of them obviously reference
their parent but others have a more subtle connection. The 66 viewing
stations are presented in a manner that is easy to access, in a double
line each 360" long and includes magnifying glasses for viewers to
take a closer look.
Starfloats: the site work at Finn Slough, consists of 99 small
replicas of Japanese glass float balls and not only connects the site
to the stars, moon and the gallery but also honours the sites history
as a fishing village. The interior of each glass ball is coated with phosphorescent
paint, made of non-toxic, rare earth pigments. There are 99 Starfloats
suspended in the trees at the point, above the No Wake sign
at the entrance to Finn Slough. The sun/light will charge them and they
will softly glow for 2 - 2.5 hours in the dusk/dark before fading away.
The glass balls reference some of the cellular images, like the lichen
and elderberry, as well as the moon and stars.
Ingrid Koivukangas, March 2007
Special thanks to Langara Colleges Biology Department, Langara
Research Grant Committee, Surjeet Sidhu, Michelle Sylliboy, Sarah Phillips,
Doug Phillips, Anne Koivukangas, Michelle McLean and Chuck Webb, Fraser
Valley Astronomical Society.
©Ingrid Koivukangas 2007