video installations describe a technologically mediated nature while
revealing the mechanics of media representation. Thater has applied red,
green, and blue colored gels—representing the elemental palette of video—to
the glass walls of the museum’s café, transforming the entire space
chromatically while at the same time, introducing us to her working means.
The video projections inside the café and in the Museum of Natural
History’s Botany Hall are both
site-specific works that continue Thater’s thematic focus on relationships among animals, human beings, and technology and the near-impossibility of experiencing nature outside the influences of culture.
Diana Thater, Delphine, 1999, video installation for 6 LCD projectors, 7 laserdisc players, 1 laserplay-le sync generator, 10 video monitors, video processor, 7 laser discs, and existing architecture, Carnegie Museum of Natural History, Botany Hall, installation dimensions variable (installation view)
Diana Thater began exhibiting her video installations in 1990. Since then her work has been featured in major international exhibitions, including 1st Kwangju Biennale and Biennale d’Art Contemporain de Lyon (1995); Jurassic Technologies Revenant, the 10th Biennale of Sydney (1996); Sculpture. Projects in Münster 1997, Westfälisches Landesmuseum and Trade Routes: History and Geography. 2nd Johannesburg Biennale (1997); and Sunshine & Noir: Art in L.A. 1960-1997, Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, Humlebæk, which also traveled to Kunstmuseum Wolfsburg (1997), Castello di Rivoli, and Armand Hammer Museum of Art, Los Angeles (1998). Solo shows of Thater’s work have been presented since 1991, including gallery exhibitions at David Zwirner, New York (1993, 1996) and 1301, Santa Monica, California (1993). Recent U.S. venues include the Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, Minnesota (1997); Museum of Modern Art, New York, and MAK Center for Art and Architecture, Schindler House, Los Angeles (1998); and St. Louis Art Museum, Missouri, and Carnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania (1999). Major international solo shows include installations at Witte de With, Rotterdam (1994); Kunsthalle Basel (1996); and Kunstverein, Hamburg (1997). Thater received the ArtPace/A Foundation for Contemporary Art’s International Artist-in-Residence award in 1998.
1990 Art Center College of Design, Pasadena, California, M.F.A.
MAK Center for Art and Architecture, Schindler House, Los Angeles. The best animals are the flat animals—the best space is the deep space (1998). Exhibition catalogue, texts by Amelia Jones, Carol McMichael Reese, Diana Thater, and Daniela Zyman.
Renaissance Society at the University of Chicago, Chicago. Diana Thater: China (1996). Exhibition catalogue, texts by Colin Gardner, Timothy Martin, and Diana Thater.
Kunsthalle Basel, Switzerland. the individual as species, the object as a medium. Diana Thater: Selected Works 1992-1996 (1996). Exhibition catalogue, interview by Kathryn Kanjo.
Cahiers #3. Witte de With, Centre for Contemporary Art, Rotterdam, Netherlands (1995). Text by Timothy Martin, cover by Diana Thater.