August 22nd – October 30th 2014

Opening reception Friday, September 5th 6:30-7:30pm

Cambridge sculptor Kat Ely‘s exquisitely cast natural forms highlight the beauty of objects often associated with decay – from fallen leaves and fungus to insects and dandelion seeds. Ely has created a site-specific installation in The Mµseum, in which her works will visually revert the space back to its origins.

Click here to download the exhibition catalog!



"Detritivores" detail (ghost flowers) 2014 Kat Ely

“Detritivores” detail (ghost flowers)
Kat Ely



“I create sculptures and installations that embody a tension between permanence and impermanence, between growth and decay as it relates to the biological world. I utilize naturally occurring but refined materials (i.e. glass, bronze, steel) in response to specimens of fungi, rotting wood, and vegetation that I encounter in the wilderness. By carefully crafting reliquaries for natural organisms I attempt to preserve the transient effects of decay and bring them into a gallery context where they can be carefully examined and studied as a cross between art object and scientific specimen. Increasingly, my sculptural and installation work includes a human element, which is suggestive of our impact”

– Kat Ely


Ely’s first explorations into the intersection of art and science began as a child when she wandered through woods and swamps near her house making plaster casts of animal tracks. She was fascinated by the impressions left in the mud, fascinated that she could learn about an animal by observing remnants left behind. Years later she attended Massachusetts College of Art and Design where she studied glass, graduating with distinction and a BFA in 2007. She actively shows her work in galleries, museums, and auctions across the United States. She was the recipient of a NICHE award in 2011, and was published in 500 Pendants and Lockets. She also received Best in Show at the Newport Art Museum, sold work in the Tacoma Museum of Glass auction, and had a solo show at Brown University. She currently lives and works outside Boston, MA where she still wanders through the woods observing and noticing details that others pass over, looking for signs of what was or what will be.


Ants were created in collaboration with David Weintraub.


Visiting The Mµseum with kids? engage them with our tiny scavenger hunt for “Detrivores:”

Look really closely at the show. Can you find the following?

– 4 black ants

– 2 yellow slugs

– 7 ghost flowers

– 6 man-made objects

– 5 leaves

BONUS: Of the 5 leaves, there are 2 oak leaves and 3 maple leaves. Can you tell which are which?