Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Kurland graduated from Yale University in 1998 with a Master of Fine Arts degree, after studying with Gregory Crewsden and Philip Lorca di Corcia . Kurland first came to notice with her work in the group show Another Girl, Another Planet (1999). In the show were her large c-print staged tableau pictures of neo-romantic landscapes inhabited by young adolescent girls, half-sprites, half juvenile delinquents. As landscapes she chose the 'secret places' of late childhood; wasteland on the edges of suburbia, 'owned' only by a feral nature and unsupervised children. Her limited-edition book Spirit West (2000) featured similar work on a more ambitious scale. In early 2001 Kurland spent several months in New Zealand, where she created similar work with schoolgirls there.
In her show Community, Skyblue (2002), Kurland turned to documenting the utopian communes of Virginia and California, highlighting the unwordly aspirations of the communards by having them appear naked in her pictures and showing them as only distant figures in their landscape. In 2003 she had European solo shows Golden Dawn (London) and Welcome Home (Vienna), based around these series of commune images.
Her latest book, Old Joy (2004) turns to men. She shows visionaries trekking naked into the wilderness, where they undergo spiritual experiences. In her 2004 show Songs of Experience she explored medieval and Biblical imagery. In 2005 she had a solo show in Japan.
In an article in ArtForum (April 2000) she talked of her inspirations...
- "I'm always thinking about painting: nineteenth-century English picturesque landscapes and the utopian ideal, genre paintings, and also Julia Margaret Cameron's photographs. I started going to museums at an early age, but my imagery is equally influenced by illustrations from the fairy tales I read as a child."
Books & significant catalogues
- Old Joy (Artspace, 2004) ISBN: 1891273051
- Spirit West (Coromandel, 2000) ISBN: 29511577230
- Another Girl, Another Planet (Lawrence Rubin Greenberg / Van Doren Fine Art, 2001)
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