Through sculpture and installation, Kia Neill creates simulations of nature that blur discomfort and the fantastic. With her installationGrotto, Neill mimics extraordinary, almost alien, natural landscapes, such as caves and coral reefs, as well as enlarges the diorama of their miniature collectibles counterparts, which serve in household aquariums, souvenir cases, gardens, etc. In this work, Neill attempts to produce an environment that reifies metaphysical association and fantasy such bizarre landscapes can induce. Neill emphasizes gaudy or absurd embellishment to render an enhanced synthetic ideal.
“I am particularly interested in cavernous spaces as a setting such as this, may offer a type of sanctuary and yet can also evoke feelings of entrapment or disorientation. While constructing a work such as” Grotto” I pay attention to the possible impact the structure may have upon the viewer’s physical comfort and boundary while incorporating a strong lure of the spectacular phenomenon. My aim is not a realistic replication, but to suggest geological and biological form amply to provoke the viewer’s imagination, in a way causing the viewer to become a participant in the work.”-Neil