The Rose of Jericho is a plant that can play dead for many years and only opens up when water is added. It is also the center piece of Ricardo Brey’s conceptual work “Rose of Jericho” which is both an installation and a video and consists of a fold-out box lined with Baroque wall paper that houses the plant encased in a glass dome on a comfortable bed of brittle paper. If, according to Brey, “The box is our head, the box is our cave, the box is the attic, the box is the memory and the world”, then the rose must be our brain which explains so many things. To add a personal flourish, the Cuban-born artist attaches an accordion-style series of his own drawings and text that somehow get folded into our complex consciousness. Brey’s fascination with boxes and their association with the complexities of the mind as it relates to the human race, evolution, history, and the relationship between man and nature are founded on the structural anthropology of Claude Lévi-Strauss and the fascinating theory of the interconnectedness of the world of Alexander von Humboldt. They are poetic artifacts that aim to identify and move beyond cultural identity and call on us to realize the shakiness of our perception. At Alexander Gray through April 6.