Pure Numerical Formula Describes Wetness and Light
Mark Fell, Jordan Milner, Eileen Quinlan, Anonymous Tantra Paintings
Curated by Eli Bornowsky
Or Gallery, June 25 — July 30, 2016
“If I could convey my research for this exhibition in the most general fashion it would be characterized as an attempt to scrutinize the relationship between sensation and intellect. Sketching this relation as a waveform, a sine wave for example, I would assign intellect to the peaks and sensation to the valleys of the wave, and the oscillation between the two would model the human experience of movement from inner thought to outer impressions and back again. Whether this relation is drawn taut like a hummingbird or sags like a broken guitar string is up for revaluation. From my experience it is always in flux, from puttering and purring to bending the throttle, and the intonation of mind-body flirtation is what makes it just as exciting to play with others as it is to play with oneself. Nevertheless, put this way, but only to begin, we would have to admit our collaboration with the Cartesian separation of mind and body. We tend to take for granted the dualistic mind-body invention and its role in divorcing experience and knowledge. For now, let us install a mind-body program precisely to experiment with the code. What, for example, will happen while riding the oscillator if we take a headlong thrust to the left or the right of its axis? Our x, y oscillator will gain a z, a third dimension and once we have taken this liberty to change course, our freedom to play with the diagram is manifold.
In order to provoke my thinking along the sensual/intellectual oscillator, I decided in my role as part-time program manager at the Or Gallery to propose an exhibition about sex and mathematics. It should be obvious how this duo maps onto the oscillator described above and also how unlikely a pairing it is. Aside from uncovering a list of groaners on the subject of math and sex (subtract the clothes, add the bed, divide the legs) and a few books that approached sex and love with a mathematical analysis consistent with its application in other fields, such as voter turnout and finance (searching for patterns, endeavoring to nail the best chances for success). The subject, it seemed, was essentially barren. Without much material to bridge the poles of my interest, and beginning with what I knew best, the plastic arts, I embarked on a study of the erotic in visual form.