Ginny Ruffner: Reforestation of the Imagination is a unique installation that fuses fine glass blowing, augmented reality (AR), and drawing. For this special presentation, Ruffner and her collaborators developed an AR app so that viewers can explore a new landscape using their phones and tablets. This reality-bending presentation is the artist’s imagining of a gloriously complex and colorful alternative environment. Viewers initially encounter a seemingly barren and bleak environment of tree stumps, but in the artist’s re-envisioned reality and using AR, the trunks grow unique appendages of mythical florae. Some of Ruffner’s creations whirl and flourish with human interaction. Reforestation of the Imagination not only challenges society’s notions of reality and fantasy, concrete and abstract, desolation and hope, but it also calls attention to current ecological issues. Don’t miss this chance to explore the intersection of art and technology at the KIA with family and friends this fall! A full-color catalogue enabled with AR coding accompanies the exhibition, so visitors can also experience some of their favorite innovative flora technology at home.
Ginny Ruffner: Reforestation of the Imagination is organized by the Renwick Gallery of the Smithsonian American Art Museum. Generous support has been provided by the Smithsonian American Women’s History Initiative, Elizabeth and James Eisenstein, Ed and Kathy Fries, Shelby and Frederick Gans, James Renwick Alliance, Colleen and John Kotelly, Betty and Whitney MacMillan, Jacqueline B. Mars, Kim and Jon Shirley Foundation, and Myra and Harold Weiss. The C.F. Foundation in Atlanta supports the museum’s traveling exhibition program, Treasures to Go.
Image credit: Ginny Ruffner, Canna grandiflora (Magnolia gondola), 2017, watercolor, pencil, and image transfer on paper. 21 x 27 in. Collection of the artist. Photo by Gene Young.