Domesticated: Modern Dioramas of Our New Natural History: Photographs by Amy Stein
January 22 - April 18, 2010
The Harvard Museum of Natural History announces a new exhibition, opening January 22, 2010, of striking, large-scale color photographs by New York–based visual artist Amy Stein. Domesticated: Modern Dioramas of our New Natural History, explores the tenuous relationship between humans and animals as human civilization increasingly encroaches upon nature.
Domesticated: Modern Dioramas of Our New Natural History: Photographs by Amy Stein will be on display at the Harvard Museum of Natural History through April 18, 2010. Informed by actual newspaper accounts and oral histories from residents of the small town of Matamoras in northeastern Pennsylvania, Stein’s photographs are staged scenes, often using taxidermied animals, illustrating real-life encounters between humans and animals. A girl and huge bear stare at each other from opposite sides of a fence surrounding the family pool. Coyotes howl at a street light. Stein’s images, at the same time both surreal and paradoxical, explore the increasingly permeable boundary between the human/built environment and the wild. Stein writes, “We at once seek connection with the mystery and freedom of the natural world, yet we continually strive to tame the wild around us and compulsively control the wild within our own nature." Elisabeth Werby, Executive Director of the Harvard Museum of Natural History commented. “Stein’s images are vivid, dramatic and sometimes even humorous, yet they invite us to consider – and reconsider—the way we live with other animals.”