Roberley Bell's artwork toys with the disconnect between how humanity perceives our control over the natural world. Her Flower Blobs, beautiful assemblages of miniature flowers that approximate gently distended spheres or free-floating dollops, touch on our relentless need to landscape and manicure — and deform — the world in our image of what it should be. But Bell's Wonder Series of self-contained miniature worlds, inspired by the wunderkammers that were fashionable in the seventeenth century, harken back to a time when humanity accepted that there were elements of the natural world — oddities of flora and fauna — that we could not explain, but at which we could only marvel. This conflict between physical control and inability to comprehend fuels Bell's art in a playful and entertaining fashion. Roberley Bell: Inside Out, a survey of her work, opens with a free public reception from 6 to 8 p.m. Friday, October 9, at Laumeier Sculpture Park (12580 Rott Road, Sunset Hills; 314-615-5278 or www.laumeier.org). The show remains up through Sunday, January 10. Admission is free, and the gallery is open every day except Monday.
Tuesdays-Sundays. Starts: Oct. 9. Continues through Jan. 10, 2009

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