Serra Victoria Bothwell Fels, Crystal Cavern
Serra Victoria Bothwell Fels (b. 1982, Tennessee) is an Australian-American artist based in Brooklyn. She creates large-scale installations inspired by fantastical blueprint drawings that abstract and compress representations of family systems. Utilizing geometry in ways akin to Sierpinski fractals or crystal structures, where larger wholes are made from smaller repeating components, Serra uses triangles as a process of mapping the thousands of genealogical connections that make up our beings. The installations born from these maps are made from discarded housing materials—predominately lath wood found behind old plaster walls—to make environmental outgrowths in the nooks and crannies of existing architecture. Her work has been shown at Pioneer Works, The Clocktower Gallery, Scope, and the Palais de Tokyo in Paris; and with her collective Rabid Hands in a former convent, a crumbling machine warehouse, and an abandoned secret society hall.
The Crystal Cavern installation at the Clocktower is a collaboration between Serra and artists Vnesswolfchild and Terence Caulkins. The crystal formations of the installations expanded over the course of her residency while Vnesswolfchild recorded and added new sound layers each day. These sounds were sculpted into a dynamic, three dimensional sound field by Caulkins to create the particular, ever-evolving soundscape of the Crystal Cavern.