Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Nicolas Grenier, Patrick Bérubé and Jean-Robert Drouillard.

Three more shows from a recent trip to Montreal.
Grenier, Take Care Pt. 2

The landscaping of implosion

For the past few years, Nicolas Grenier has been painting the landscapes of planned communities in a sickly infrared glow. "Proximités," his latest show at Art Mur, caustically displays the compartmentalized lives of the increasingly fragmentary classes and the murky ideological divide between them. He manages to render the social implosion currently taking place with an aesthetic depersonalization and clarity which is rare.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Mark Ruwedel, Étienne Tremblay-Tardif, Karen Trask and Marie-Jeanne Musiol at The Belgo.

Backwash on black holes.

There is no personal God, and our supreme effort lies in the destruction of our personality, the passage into the absolute sphere of being.
- Schelling in a letter to Hegel 

These exhibitions ran simultaneously at different galleries in The Belgo building in Montreal. They had an eerie kind of unintentional resonance with one another.  

Vaccinated with a phonograph needle 

The American photographer Mark Ruwedel's "Photographies" at Art 45 was made of a series of stellar, black and white images. The majority of them showed records decaying in the desert. Some of them still had fragments of their sleeves remaining, the eroding faces crumbling over the vinyl. Supplementing these was a set of images of bras decomposing in the desert, flattened or crumpled up by brush.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Aesthetic Re-creation & Outsider Art.

"Archaeological research is blind and empty without aesthetic re-creation and aesthetic re-creation is irrational and often misguided without archaeological research. But, 'leaning against one another' these two can support the 'system that makes sense,' that is, an historical synopsis." - Erwin Panofsky

Leslie Dawn's National Visions, National Blindness: Canadian Art and Identities in the 1920s examines the history of the Group of Seven's reception in Europe and the ensuing quest, by Eric Brown and Marius Barbeau, to reterritorialize Canada. The process necessitated the need to either erase the Native presence or frame it within a narrative of decomposition that would pave the way for the settler races to claim the country as their own. Dawn takes the resistance of the Gitxsan in British Columbia as a further test case of the failure of the strategy.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Movie Day: Bill Reid.

This documentary follows Haida artist Bill Reid, from British Columbia. A jeweller and wood carver, he works on a traditional Haida totem pole. We watch the gradual transformation of a bare cedar trunk into a richly carved pole to stand on the shores of the town of Skidegate, in the Queen Charlotte Islands of B.C.