Absolute Zero: Felicia LeRoy and Carolyn Spears

Absolute Zero

“Absolute zero” refers to the basis of the Kelvin temperature scale—the theoretical extreme of the lowest temperature possible. This exhibition features Felicia LeRoy (UW-Madison BFA 2014, RISD MFA 2017) and Carolyn Spears (U. of Louisville BFA 2015, UW-Madison MFA 2024 Candidate), whose expertise in some of the hottest material on earth is paired with their subject matter, which addresses extremes in human and geological experiences via the glass-like substance of ice.

LeRoy’s works are often elemental in nature, often using glass to mimic water or ice. Her body is also employed as an index of breath—both via its limitations in water, and thus an expanded notion of body as breath as wind.

Spears’ work is an investigation of time, materials, and mortality. In her work, ice—and its ability to transform, fracture, obfuscate, record, and vanish—demonstrates the precarity of existence. It represents the inevitability of losing time. Ice operates as a metaphor for grief, asking viewers to contend with their impermanence by calling into question natural phenomena that shape existence.

This exhibition is curated by Helen Lee and presented by the Wisconsin Union Directorate Art Committee.

Glass Madison Exhibitions are supported by: Anonymous Fund, Marilynn R. Baxter Fund, Office of Professional Learning and Community Education (PLACE), UW-Madison Art Department, UW-Madison Division of the Arts Emily Mead Baldwin Award in the Creative Arts, UW-Madison School of Education Impact 2030 Helen Burish Fund, and the 175th Anniversary Grant Award.


Exhibition Information

Main Gallery, Memorial Union
800 Langdon St., Madison, WI 53703

Exhibition Dates
September 29-November 17, 2023
Gallery open 8am-10pm Monday-Sunday

Opening Reception
September 29, 2023, 6-8pm

Gallery Talks
October 5, 2023, 5-7pm

UW-Madison Art

Division of the Arts