Emma cc Cook - Acre Eaters

Dates May. 16, 2024 - Jul. 13, 2024
Opening May. 17, 2024

In Emma cc Cook’s exhibition, Acre Eaters, we are beckoned into a realm where artistry meets agricultural allegory, unveiling a haunting narrative of rural America's struggle against industrialization's relentless advance. Through a meticulous blend of systematic precision and emotive storytelling, Cook illuminates the profound tension between humanity and nature, drawing from her own upbringing to evoke a landscape scarred by the shadows of progress.

Emma cc Cook has a mathematical process of composing that flows in accordance with agricultural narratives. We see her vision of horror in regards to the control of the natural world. Through technological acceleration the populus has become increasingly distanced from the means of production of our food. Machines replace labor for aging populations - the “acre eater” replaced the mule just as the city replaced the farm. It is in these flashbacks to her past with the midwest where her stretched and warped fields of oil paint adeptly weave a tale that explores the intricacies of American history and the shared recollections ingrained within it. Cook’s paintings diverge from conventional landscapes; fragments of memory dance across the canvas, disrupting the uniformity of agricultural vistas, and imbuing each piece with a balanced disarray.

Cook’s portrayal of a mechanical America immerses the viewer in a silent pressure. Set within obsidian steel or deep mahogany frames, the works hint at a bleak future, echoing fading craft traditions and eroding notions of self-sufficiency. Through these precisely trimmed apertures, meticulously groomed expanses of pale terrain sweep past and we become struck with an unsettling future of tragedy. We start to understand that America’s desire for efficiency characterizes capitalism’s tendency towards accelerationism and the pursuit of superabundance through the misuse of earth's natural resources.