Breather II

Lauria Clarke. Juried Artist
Mon 24 June – Wed 26 June

Artist Statement

Distinguishing between the living and the non-living is a core, evolutionary function of the human brain. While the distinction is easily drawn in daily life, a definition of the rules governing this casual act of discretion eludes thinkers throughout history. We may be closer than ever to finding a unified definition of aliveness, yet the line between the living and the non-living is increasingly difficult to draw. Long held characteristics of plant and animal life are no longer strictly synonymous with the living, leaving a diffused boundary where we once believed harder lines.

Breather II respires through nipple-like pores in its skin, exploring the subtle movement of breath and the flexibility of a living skeleton. It is a hybrid being, stranded along an evolutionary path both future and past. Without apparent function, its form remains suspended in time, neither an efficient expression of evolved change nor a disjointed assemblage filled with potential. Its body is in-between, paralyzed in the face of chaotic environmental factors and the capital driven, synthetic genetics that surround it. Sometimes breathing quickly, sometimes slowly, its motion is reminiscent of a being which is panicked, hard at work, or fast asleep. Like any living body illuminated in the dark, its shadow stands alone and untethered, reflecting the life held within.

About the artists

Lauria Clarke is an artist and educator based in Montreal and New York City. Her sculpture-based practice examines the uncanny intersections of technologies, materials, and bodies that emerge from contemporary conceptions of the natural world. Often employing latex rubber and electronics, Lauria, asks viewers to consider how the natural is intuitively defined in contrast to the artificial. She is constantly curious to push the point at which familiar bodily form becomes alien.

Lauria holds an MFA in Design and Technology from The Parsons School of Design and an MS in Computer Engineering from Northeastern University. She has taught at Hunter College and The Parsons School of Design and is currently a member of the Antimodular Research team. Her recent work and research collaborations have been featured in Boston, New York City, Portland, and Los Angeles.

Credits: Lauria Clarke


ISEA2024 acknowledges the Turrbal and Yugara as the First Nations owners of the lands where the symposium will be held. We pay our respects to their elders, lores, customs and creation spirits. We also acknowledge and pay respects to all First Nations peoples across the continent and beyond Australian shores.