Main Gallery

Jessica Segall:
Reverse Alchemy on the Gold Coast

A new large-scale site-specific installation by Brooklyn-based multidisciplinary artist Jessica Segall features newly-produced works based on the artist's research into reverse engineering gold. The exhibition questions and compares the value of gold and extractive capitalism against clean water and fertile soil.

The term “reverse alchemy” is a scientific process by which refined gold from the US mint is dissolved and restructured into new geological formations through chemical and mechanical processes. Jessica Segall began her research into reverse alchemy in 2019 through a collaboration with the Mining Department at the University of Utah, in which she produced a set of experimental stones and grew potatoes in diluted gold-water. Segall’s research was then exhibited in a group show in Lima, Peru in January 2020. 

The project will cover the length of the gallery floor with hardened lava flow, created using a lava furnace to melt rock into liquid form. A luscious garden of edible plants grows under UV light in dissolved gold-water, surrounded by large, procedural video projections of the process of dissolving gold. 



Jessica Segall is a Brooklyn-based artist working in sculpture, performance and video. Travels to hostile climates inspire Segall's work, which is designed to unpack ideas of environmental conservation and support the public commons of air, water and land. Segall has sited work at the Global seed vault in the high arctic, sites of brokered fertility such as the almond groves in the California desert, and most recently, private wildlife reserves in the US that allow individual ownership of endangered predators. In all of these spaces, nationalism and economy define belonging in the natural and legal landscape.

Selected solo exhibitions include: 100 Years: All New People, SPACES, Cleveland (2020); Work in Black, La Borie, Limousin, France (2019); Jessica Segall, Concordia, Enchede, NL (2018); Tomorrow’s Parlor, Kunsthalle Weseke, Weseke, Germany (2018); Un-common Intimacy, Fons Welters, Amsterdam, NL (2018); Nom Nom Ohm, Cuchifritos Gallery and Project Space, NY, (2016); ½ a cord, Recess, NY (2015); A Thirsty Person, 1708 Gallery, Richmond, (2013); The Hardship, Vox Populi, Philadelphia (2012).

Selected group exhibitions include: Hawapi X, ICPNA, Lima, Peru (2020); Other.Worldly, Fries Museum, Leewarden , NL (2020); The Spectral Within, 5-50 Gallery, Long Island City, NY (2019); Skowhegan Two Channel Video Festival, Skowhegan, NY (2019); Alien Phenomenology, Media Arts Gallery, Brooklyn (2019); As of Right, Richard and Dolly Maas Gallery, SUNY Purchase, Purchase, NY (2019); Recipe About Art, Bamboo Curtain Studio, New Taipei City, Taiwan (2019); Art for Arctic’s Sake, Fordham University Ildiko Gallery, NY (2018); Orakel, Arti et Amicitiae, Amsterdam, NL (2018); Museumnacht Scene, Unseen, Oud-Rekem Kasteel, Rekem, Belgium (2018); 24:7, Dwek Gallery, Jerusalem, IL (2018); Draw, Museum of Contemporary Art Vojvodina, Novi Sad, Serbia Cultural Embassy, CBK Groningen. Leeuwarden, NL (2018); Uproot, Smack Mellon, Brooklyn (2017); Non-human Narratives, Van Eyck Academie, Maastricht, NL (2017); Agrikultura Triennial, Malmö, Sweden (2017); Draw / Boston, Bakalar & Paine Galleries, Mass Art, Boston (2017); Fugue in B Flat, Temple Gallery at Tyler University, Philadelphia, (2017); LANDMARK, Socrates Sculpture Park, Queens (2016); The Things I Carried, Blue StarArts Complex, San Antonio (2016); Time + Space: Futures, Bemis Art Center, Omaha (2016); Well Traveled, RushCorridor Gallery, Brooklyn (2016).

Jessica Segall received her MFA in 2010 from the Columbia University School of Art, New York, and her Bachelors in 2000 from Bard College, Annandale, NY. 

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