Pushing into the liminal spaces that make us most uncomfortable, Larassa Kabel regularly traverses the emotional and intellectual space between life and death, love and loss, and the powerful and the powerless. Through the drawing, painting, performance and sculpture of her solo practice and her collaborative work with photographer Ben Easter as The Belle Morte Collective, she confronts viewers with that which makes us most uncomfortable: all white Americans’ relationship to racism, the dynamic tension of power and desire between men and women, our view of ourselves as “outside of Nature”, and our desire to distance ourselves as much as possible from the knowledge of our mortality. The Any Minute Now series of life size colored pencil drawings of horses splayed and falling through blank white spaces are meditations on how to Be with death. Tightly cropped POV drawings of fellatio rehumanize the individual pornographic players who had been become flattened in their commodification. Lush photos of dead animals being tenderly embraced by Kabel illustrate the continued relationship between the living and the dead, acknowledges that death is the great equalizer, and reinforces our place in Nature.
Larassa Kabel was born in 1970 and received her BFA with honors in 1992 from Iowa State University with an emphasis in fibers. She currently lives in Des Moines, IA where she works as a full time artist and curator. She has received numerous grants and awards including an Iowa Arts Council Fellowship, and her work has been shown nationally and is in several corporate and private collections including the Des Moines Art Center, the White House and the World Food Prize.