Judit Hersko is an installation artist whose work has been featured in numerous exhibitions in the United States and Europe. In 1991 she was a visiting artist at the Women’s Museum in Bonn, Germany and in 1997 she represented her native Hungary at the Venice Biennale. Her work has been shown in Germany, Austria, Hungary, Spain, and in many cities around the United States including Chicago, New York, Los Angeles and San Diego. In 1995 she received an Artslink Collaborative Grant and in 1998/99 she won a California Arts Council Visual Arts Fellowship in Sculpture. She has several pieces in museum collections including The Museum of Contemporary Art, Ludwig Museum in Budapest. Her work has been the subject of many publications including articles in Sculpture Magazine and Art in America.
Hersko’s work investigates memory, identity and the ephemeral nature of existence through light projections and physical transformation of matter. During her residency Hersko will continue to explore the transformation of matter by experimenting with the dissolution of sculptures made of calcium carbonate (marble, limestone and shell fish). She is collaborating on this project with biologist Victoria Fabry whose work investigates how the oceans are affected by the passive uptake of the increasing levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide created by human activities. The increased acidity of ocean waters that results from this uptake leads to changes in ocean chemistry, which in turn dissolves calcified organisms such as corals and molluscs. While in the short term this process neutralizes the atmospheric CO2 thereby creating the illusion that nature takes care of this problem, it is changing the ocean environment. As these organisms dissolve there remains less calcium carbonate to neutralize carbon dioxide in the future resulting in catastrophic effects. Hersko’s aim is to create a layered, multimedia installation that helps visualize this process through various elements including the dissolution of sculptures created from calcium carbonate placed in ocean water with lowered pH levels.