In October 2015 artist Steve Juras exhibited a work titled Transplant at Box Gallery.
His original statement read, “Transplant is a collaborative exchange between artist and curator. The artist has planted anise and mint seeds, herbs with medicinal and culinary uses, inside a 6 x 6 inch box filled with potting soil. The health and success of the work depends on the frequency and diligence with which the curator waters the soil and cultivates the seeds. Upon the conclusion of the exhibition, artist and curator will remove the work from the gallery and transplant it to a separate venue.”
Due to unfortunate circumstances, the anise and mint seeds never sprouted, leaving the work unresolved. Steve Juras gave three options for how to complete the work. The first was to transplant the soil into one of my asphalt emulsion sculptures, the second to transplant into a new pot and keep inside, and the third was to transplant outside.
I decided to go with the third option, and transported the soil to my acre of land in northeastern Arizona, where I planted the soil in the center of my property. I then refilled Box Gallery with red sand collected from various sites in Arizona, completing the original intention of a collaborative exchange between artist and curator.
The title "Re:Transplant" is a reference to our sporadic email communication and the referential nature of this new work.
Steve Juras is an artist, educator and occasional curator. His work has been exhibited at the Fulton Street Collective, Kitchen Space, Hyde Park Art Center and the Garfield Park Arts Center in Indianapolis, IN. He lives in Chicago with his wife and their dog, Wallace.