For her newest exhibition, The Etiquette of Mountains, Jacci Den Hartog presents work consisting of painted landscape sculptures at Rosamund Felsen Gallery. Inspired by Aldo Leopold’s A Sand County Almanac (1949) and his writings on ideas of land as community and the delicate equilibrium for which nature constantly aspires, Den Hartog constructs mountain and water forms that appear both tenuous and grounded simultaneously. Seeing mountains as fulcrums from which their environment pivots, a sculpture of icey-blue mountaintops supported by a wooden beam arrangement shares the title of the show. Drawn from the floor plan of a 4 tatami mat tea house, the beams have been pulled, stretched and stacked in such a way that the distribution of weight of the piece is contingent on the exact placement of the mountaintops.
In the second gallery, the sculptures – though often sourced and combined from actual sites and geological waterfalls - are abstractions of the flowing water forms as they drape or cascade down the mountainsides. In removing the mountain from which the waterfalls occur, these sculptures appear to be rising upward toward the sky. Further abstraction occurs when luminescent pinks, mauves, oranges, greens, ochres and blues are dripped, brushed and poured over these sculptures.
Blurring lines between abstraction and representation, Den Hartog’s sculptures capture time, defy gravity and meditate on the mannerisms of nature and our relationship to it.