Liliana Bloch Gallery is pleased to present Collecting Forests, a new exhibition by Leigh Merrill.
Collecting Forests is a series of large-scale digital collages exploring the construction, idealization, and loss of our environments through images of the forest. Responding to our current era where the entirety of our world is affected by humans, Merrill considers how our ideas, values, curiosity, fears, destruction, and expectations are projected into our increasingly endangered forests. Merrill’s images are neither real nor absolute fiction; they point to a complicated relationship to the environment, a combination of what exists and what is desired. The images, poetically situated between reality and simulation, depict forests as dioramas, theatre sets, and wallpaper. These images become a metaphor for forest loss and the faint replicas that remain in these landscapes. The images Merrill creates are views from within the forest, presenting specific but not landmark locations, contrary to a distant, expansive, and authoritative view of the landscape. Each picture is created by digitally collaging hundreds of individual photographs made in forests across the United States. The collection of plants and tress in each image is improbable - a form of digital assisted migration - signaling possibility, connection, and loss.
Liliana Bloch Gallery is a contemporary art gallery founded in April of 2013. The gallery represents national and international artists working in all media. The Gallery works to create a multicultural dialogue between collectors, curators, educational art venues, and the public.
In 2014, the gallery started its public art program URBANO to educate and promote the understanding of contemporary art featuring selected artworks and experimental interdisciplinary projects outside the confines of the traditional gallery physical space. The gallery believes in the power of education and uses contemporary art as a catalyst for critical thought.