Dominique Paul's Insects of Surinam 19 is a site-specific installation composed of an original print, lit from behind, effectively morphing the West 10th Window into an exposed lightbox. Insects of Surinam 19 is part of an ongoing photo-collage series in which male body parts from bodybuilding magazines are juxtaposed with Maria Sibylla Merian's botanical illustrations from The Metamorphosis of the Insects of Surinam. Published in 1705, this text is still considered one of the most significant contributions to the field of entomology and is notable for its careful documentation of butterfly metamorphosis. Here, Paul juxtaposes the form of the male body builder with the illustration of a sweet potato plant, positioned as if growing out of the sidewalk. Paul's prints work to destabilize common associations of the feminine and nature; as the flesh of the male body becomes part of the plants and insects depicted in Merian's drawings, masculinity and nature become one.
The West 10th Street Window is curated by Natalie Diaz and Jennie Lamensdorf and is sponsored by the Time Equities Inc. (TEI) Art-in-Buildings Program. TEI is committed to enriching the experience of our properties through the Art-in-Buildings Program, an innovative approach that brings contemporary art by emerging and mid-career artists to non-traditional exhibition spaces in the interest of promoting artists, expanding the audience for art, and creating a more interesting environment for our building occupants, residents, and their guests.