new-york

Kirsten Mosher

Sandra Gering Gallery

Kirsten Mosher’s installation, Top Soil Nations, 1992, attempted to walk us across the boundaries of our geopolitical landscape. Soil extracted from various locations (Kuwait, Kenya, Greece, Belgium, Canada, Ireland, Antarctica, etc.) was enshrined in laminated plastic sleeves informally attached to the wall and sprinkled in haphazard patches across the floor, transforming the gallery—a by now familiar site for disenfranchised political polemics—into a loose model for an ideal “world,” as the dirt from one country was treaded on and mixed with the soils of other nations.

Ultimately, however, Top Soil Nations was nothing more than a didactic object lesson: Mosher played the role of the learned naturalist (a canvas bag with additional soil samples rested conspicuously on the floor in a corner of the gallery), while the viewer served as the catalyst, who, in mixing the soil, both activated

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