I investigate the scientific world as a passionate outsider. My practice involves research, collaboration with specialists, and field work, but my videos move away from strict science; they are subjective and sensual explorations of scientific ideas. My body is my tool for measurement, and I use it to examine the effects of invasive insects on forests, fundamental constants of the universe, or the electrical emanations of plants. Sound plays an important role in creating narrative: one can hear the whirring of a Fizeau apparatus that is measuring the speed of light, an electrical hum, fingers rustling leaves, water dripping, or the sound of gravity pulling two bodies together. I examine the place where science and art must part ways; and I force them back together again.
Artist Bio / CV
Julia Oldham was raised by a physicist, an avid gardener and a pack of dogs in rural Western Maryland, and her childhood was filled with adventures in the woods, bee stings, drawings, and science experiments. Oldham studied art history at St. Mary’s College of Maryland and then received her MFA from the University of Chicago. She lives in Brooklyn, and she also travels around the country to participate in residencies.
Oldham's work has been screened/exhibited at Art in General in New York, NY; MoMA PS1 in Long Island City, NY; PPOW in New York, NY; The Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago, IL; Espaço3 in Lisbon, Portugal; the Dia Foundation at the Hispanic Society in New York, NY; the Smithsonian Hirshhorn Museum in Washington, DC; and FACT in Liverpool, UK. Her work has been supported by Artadia, the Fund for Art and Dialogue, New York, NY; Art in General, New York, NY; Bernheim Arboretum and Research Forest, Clermont, KY; and the City of Chicago Departent of Cultural Affairs, Chicago, IL.