Eco-Baroque is a maximalist aesthetic approach to style in which magnificent opulence is created using simple materials that are ornate or decorative, mixing in natural materials when possible or practical. Exploring the concept of this invented genre through installation, we aim to inform and amuse while questioning our consumption of energy, resources, and the attempts to simulate the actions of the sun (tanning beds, grow lights, and by extension - nuclear fusion) and humanity's ever-changing relationship to nature. We draw analogies between ornate beauty as found in nature and the luxury goods with which mankind seeks in order to try and separate himself from the animals.
We draw inspiration from moss, lichen, crystals, minerals, honeycomb, coconuts, Native American culture, reflections, gold leaf, fountains, dioramas, chandeliers, most shiny things and psychedelic patterns found abundantly in nature. Our collaborative process is very spontaneous and allows us to push the boundaries of each of our individual oeuvres, often to absurd dimensions. We share a similar sense of humor, political, social and eco-based attitudes about the world and making art. Individually, we have produced work that explores Pacific Northwest regionalism with both humor and reverence for the place where we have been raised and live.
Marne Lucas and Bruce Conkle
Marne Lucas is a photographer and multi-disciplinary artist living and working in New York City and Portland, Oregon. Her works frequently employ sensual metaphor with a witty sense of humor and include photography, video, and sculpture. Using the camera to intimately explore her subjects, she merges visual beauty and abstract yet positional narrative in artist portraits and self-portraits; the body is a canvas to explore the subtle nuances of identity, persona, our collective fragile existence, and how our culture responds with changing and conflicting social attitudes. 'MLSP' (Marne Lucas Self Portrait) is an ongoing photo series of ever-evolving parade of characters, of all genders, in urban locales and in nature, making commentary about social roles.
Lucas has worked as a visual artist, in film & video production, performance, curatorial projects, and in health and arts related non-profit organizations. Eco-Baroque exhibited in the Porltand2010: Biennial of Contemporary Art, 2009 she made a public art commission for the PSU Smith Memorial Student Union, 'Public Art + Residency Projects: Oregon Percent for Art Program', was a RACC grant recipient (2006) for her photographic series of artist portraits, (2009) Warlord Sun King and wrote and performed an elaborate puppet show as Blinglab in Portland at PICA's TBA:06 festival. She is a CentralTrak (2012) and a Caldera Artist Residency alumn. Lucas and Conkle most recently participated in the 2nd Land Art Biennial in the Gobi Desert (2012.)
Bruce Conkle loves snowmen, coconuts, fairy tales, crystals, and meteorites. He is interested in creating work which uses art and humor to address contemporary attitudes toward nature and environmental concerns, including deforestation and climate change. Bruce's work often deals with escapism, artificial worlds and mans place within nature and frequently examines what he calls the misfit quotient at the crossroads. His work has shown in Reykjavik, Rio De Janeiro, Victoria, Miami, Chicago, New York, Seattle and Portland. Mr. Conkle received a Hallie Ford Fellowship in 2011 and has been the recipient of multiple RACC project grants. He took part in the inaugural Signal Fire residency program on Mt Hood, is co-founder to the artist collective Blinglab, and a 2006 Caldera Artist Residency alum. Eco Baroque (Conkle and Lucas ) most recently participated in the 2nd Land Art Mongolia Biennial in the Gobi Desert (2012.)