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About the Photographer
American, b. 1955
In works that combine digitally-altered imagery and handcrafted physical objects, artist Richard Krueger confronts the manipulation of nature in the age of advanced imaging technology and genetic engineering. In the series Liminal Nature, Krueger digitally alters multiple source photographs and combines them into phantasmagoric compositions, which depict animals sprouting strange appendages and engaging in unusual activities. The images evoke the ways in which nature is approached as a laboratory or site of experimentation, leading to altered forms and hybrids that destabilize conceptions of the natural and the artificial. "Today myth making is an exact science," Krueger states, "and our mythical beings are living creatures.… Similar to the mythological mermaid, our techno-magically invented versions of the beast—including Dolly the sheep, AIBO the robotic dog, and the talking animals of television and film—represent our desire to re-constitute the boundaries of the natural world." Kreuger presents these images of "liminal realities," as he describes them, within small viewing devices made of cherry wood and lit from behind using a polished reflector. Visually recalling early optical instruments, this mode of presentation references the history of optical and photographic technology as well as scientific research from past eras, which in part provide the foundation for efforts to reconfigure the forms of nature today.
Krueger completed a BS from the University of South Dakota, Vermillion (1984), and an MFA in photography and digital imaging from the University of Notre Dame, Indiana (1991). Since 2000 he has been a professor in the Sam Fox School of Design and Visual Arts at Washington University in St. Louis. He previously taught at Saint Mary's College, Notre Dame, IN; Indiana University South Bend; and Youngstown State University, OH.