Kai Lossgott : nothing with skin is blind

the first leaf. Kai Lossgott. 2008. Typewriter on sycamore leaf. Spruce and glass light boxes. 30 x 30 cm. SASOL Art Collection.

sound. Kai Lossgott. 2008. Laser engraving on foxglove leaf. Spruce and glass light boxes. 30 x 30 cm. SASOL Art Collection.

neurotech. Kai Lossgott. 2008. Laser engraving on morning glory leaf. Spruce and glass light boxes. 30 x 30 cm. Private Collection.

Installation view at Gordart Gallery in Melville, South Africa, in April 2008

For South African conceptual artist Kai Lossgott's latest project, 'nothing with skin is blind' he has made minute incisions, punctures and impressions into the tissue of plant leaves to form texts and images which are only visible against the light. Displayed in lightboxes, the leaves gleam. One of the texts makes reference to "the inheritance of light". "Shoot," proclaims another, "in spring his heart / is open as a gun".

Lossgott's work emphasises the shift from an anthropocentric to a biocentric position, from the human-centred to the life-centred. Most of the engravings are continuous line drawings exploring the sensory abilities of the human body. "We have certain features in common with plants," says the artist. "We develop in symmetry, with a form of skin, branches and capillaries containing blood or sap. We both perceive a diurnal and seasonal progression in the body. A plant perceives in the way human skin perceives. It scars, it heals. It remembers."

'Nothing with skin is blind' makes reference to cellular memory and engrams, a postulated biological change in neural tissue that represents a memory. Plant, human or animal, the artist seems to say, our biological processes bear certain similarities. It is through these similarities that Lossgott draws into question the boundaries between different forms of sentient life and where exactly consciousness begins.

'nothing with skin is blind' was first shown at the Gordart Gallery in Melville, South Africa, in April 2008. The work has since been acquired by various corporate collections.

To see more of Kai's work, visit www.kailossgott.com


The Endangered Species Print Project

Many of you may have wondered where I have been lately. Well among other things, I was getting this little joey out of the pouch (to use the terminology of my fellow artist & collaborator Molly Schafer).

May I present to you, esteemed readers, the Endangered Species Print Project!

The Endangered Species Print Project offers limited edition prints of critically endangered species.

The number of prints available corresponds with the remaining animal or plant populations.

For example, only 30 Amur Leopards remain in the wild, so for this edition, only 30 prints will ever be made.

All proceeds from ESPP are donated to conservation organizations.

A different organization, whose mission is to the ensure the survival of the specie depicted, is chosen for each print.

An example of one of the prints offered on ESPP --- in this case, this is the highly endangered and charming Golden Frog
We are actively looking for ways to promote the project and artists that would like to participate, so please contact me at espp@EndangeredSpeciesPrintProject.com if you're interested in lending a paw...

We have already received major interest from The Center for Biological Diversity, who we'll be collaborating with and from The Sierra Club, who'll be posting about ESPP on their blog and most likely publishing an article on the project this year in SIERRA Magazine. We'll also work with them on a print or series of prints. Very exciting!