To everyone in the east coast this holiday season, here’s the checklist for what to see while you’re there:
1. The Last Frontier group exhibition at the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia – www.artgalleryofnovascotia.ca
2. Jayce Salloum at The Confederation Centre of the Arts, PEI .
3. A Canadian Winter, The Beaverbrook Art Gallery, Fredericton – www.beaverbrookartgallery.org
4. Ship Shape by Stefan Hancherow, MSVU Art Gallery, Halifax – www.msvuart.ca
5. Elena Popova and Barb Hunt’s exhibitions at the Rooms, St.John’s – www.therooms.ca
What does artouteast have in store for the New Year? Betty Goodwin, animal blood and lots of surprises!
Happy Holidays everyone!
Image Credits (top to bottom): Jayce Salloum History of the Present installation shot; Elena Popova Let Me Know the Way, mixed media on paper, 40cm x 60cm 2010 from Elena Popova: Still Vortices.
Sackville, New Brunswick is home to the Owens Art Gallery, the oldest University Art Gallery in Canada. If you are in the neighborhood in the next week, you get the chance to see two great exhibitions on there now.
Feed, an exhibition of recent work by Halifax artist Tonia DiRisio will continue at the Owens until December 19th. Feed features footage taped in 2006 when DiRisio traveled to a small town in Italy and recorded a series of women preparing a variety of local dishes in their kitchens. This work examines the tradition of passing and sharing of family recipes. The footage she has collected has been developed into a video installation.
BLIMP, a video installation by Ryan Suter, is located in the window of the Owens Art Gallery each evening until December 16th. Blimp explores the anxieties of the “daily grind” and the human strategies for dealing with these situations. Killing time becomes the narrative thread as these small players manage as best they can in a world that is far from chaotic. Ryan Suter is a multi-disciplinary artist living and working in Sackville, NB.
When I first met Barb Hunt, it was in my studio in art school. Then, she was working on her body of work anti-personnel, where she knit replicas of antipersonnel land mines in various shades of pink wool. This series, which was displayed at the Art Gallery of Ontario in 2001, and of which 50 of the fuzzy landmines are now in the Agnes Etherington Art Centre’s collection, opened my eyes to the power of pink, and inspired my own art practice from that day forward.
From December 10th – January 4th, The Rooms in St. John’s, Newfoundland will house Barb Hunt’s recent work in the exhibition, Toll. “Hunt continues to explore themes of mourning, human conflict and memory. Using camouflage fabric as a central theme and material, Hunt’s art considers the human costs of armed conflict balanced by a deep empathy for individuals, including soldiers, in areas of hostility. Beyond depicting the absurdity of war, Hunt’s nuanced installations contemplate the fragility and beauty of the human body.” In such works as Incarnate (image), Hunt carefully and obsessively embroiders pink thread on used army fatiques. Incarnate, as well as the rest of the exhibition, depicts both the insanity and absurdity of war, contrasted with careful obsessive sewing that speaks volumes about the fragility and beauty of the human body.
Mr.Webster defines Nephology as “the branch of meteorology that studies clouds”. Hannah Claus, an artist based in Montréal, adds that, “Clouds are basically masses of suspended drops of water in the sky, constantly shifting. I’m interested in the idea of these microscopic individual elements that come together to form a whole: the patterns, shapes and forms they create.”
Her recent exhibition, “Nephology” at the Confederation Centre in Prince Edward Island, embodies the artistic metaphor of the cloud in several installation pieces, including Cloud (above). Claus filled me in on the work:
“Cloud …(was) created for the Confederation gallery space, which got me looking/thinking at the recurrent use of clouds/sky in my work. I think that the cloud piece is perhaps more of an engagement with the shifting nature of contact/connections with others and self, communication and memory. I like the idea of having your head in the clouds. What does that mean? Where would it take you?”
Another installation in the show, Skystrip, uses digital images of clouds and scattered stones collected from the place where it is being exhibited (in this case, the red clay stones of P.E.I.). Not only is it “about a dialogue happening between the stones and the sky,” but also about the connection to the work and the environment it is in at the present moment. When asked about showing this body of work in P.E.I., Claus adds “I’m happy to have the work be seen in Charlottetown as I think the context affects the reading of the works. Every place has its own relationship with clouds, sky and stones.”
Over the past 10 years, Claus had participated in exhibitions throughout Canada, as well as internationally. Upcoming projects for her include group exhibitions at the NONAM in Zurich (2011) and the Museum of Art and Design in New York (2012).
Mireille Eagan curated Hannah Claus: nephology. The exhibition is part of the Confederation Centre Art Gallery’s Emerging Artist Series supported by the RBC Foundation.
image: Hannah Claus, Cloud, 2010, Double-matte reprography film. thread, glue
This Friday, December 3rd, curator Sarah Fillmore’s symphony of an exhibition, “The Last Frontier” opens at the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia. Although I have not seen the exhibition, it is easy to anticipate expectations being surpassed with such a stellar line up.
Canadian Art Stars Vikky Alexander, David Askevold, Iain Baxter&, Mark Bovey, Ed Burtynsky, Erik Edson, Holly King, Kelly Richardson, and Tom Sherman, American Alan Sonfist, as well as France-based Isabelle Dehay and duo Scenocosme make up “The Last Frontier”, which “examines the tension between nature, culture, technology and the built environment.”
Needless to say I will be frequenting the AGNS during my stay in Halifax this holiday season. In the meantime, for anyone in Halifax, I highly recommend going to see .
Mount Saint Vincent University Art Gallery’s line up has blown me away over the last year. When I caught sight of Kim Morgan’s piece, “Range Light, Borden-Carleton, PEI, 2010” (above), which was up until November 21st, it was this body of work that inspired me to start “Art Out East” in the first place. If there are such sophisticated, thought provoking bodies of work being produced and not in the face, in the head lines, of every major art publication in the country, then something has to be done.