The University of Chicago News Office
Sept. 3, 2002 Press Contact: Karen Reimer
(773) 702-8670

Julie Moos: Monsanto Series

September 22-November 3, 2002

From poker-faced high school friends and rivals, to homeowners beside their housekeepers, to Baptist churchgoers competing side-by-side in ever-more elaborate Sunday hats, Julie Moos uses photographic series to expose the intricacies of human relationships. Currently living and working in Birmingham, Alabama, Moos was an artist-in-residence at the St. Louis Forum for Contemporary Art when she created a body of work entitled Monsanto Series, presenting the contemporary American farmer among his fields. Specifically, Moos photographed farmers working with genetically modified organisms (GMOs) produced by the Monsanto Company, whose world headquarters is based in St. Louis.

In a climate where developments in biogenetic engineering are met with increasing controversy, Moos chose to distance herself and her subjects from the debate and instead offer a straightforward, quasi-documentary presentation of individuals, the land, and the corporation behind them. The formal composition of the photographs recalls a long tradition of iconic portraits depicting the American farmer with his acreage spread about him. As is her practice, Moos posed the farmers in pairs: brothers, husbands and wives, fathers and sons. In a departure from her earlier series, however, the primary interplay is not between the two individuals, but between the individuals and their surrounding landscape-in this case framed by the overarching presence of the corporation.

Recently featured in the 2002 Whitney Biennial, Moos has had solo exhibitions at the Birmingham Museum of Art, Birmingham, AL; Fredericks Freiser Gallery, New York and the Marcia Wood Gallery in Atlanta, GA. She has participated in the group exhibitions Stagings: Janieta Eyre, Julie Moos, Zwelethu Mthethwa at the Contemporary Art Museum in St. Louis, MO; Chelsea Rising at the Contemporary Art Center in New Orleans, LA; Collectors Choice at Exit Art in New York and at Sable-Castelli Gallery, Toronto.

Established in 1915, The Renaissance Society is Chicago's oldest contemporary art museum. Focusing on the forefront of the visual arts, The Renaissance Society maintains an international reputation as one of the finest resources for contemporary art. In addition to exhibitions, The Renaissance Society also sponsors concerts, performances, film and video screenings, and talks by noted artists and critics.

Museum hours: Tues-Fri 10 am-5 pm, Sat & Sun 12-5 pm. Closed Mondays.
Admission to the gallery and all events is free.
Last modified at 11:27 AM CST on Tuesday, September 03, 2002.

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