Early Thaw, n.d.
Hand-coloured photo etching
Ontario-based artist George Raab’s practice spans four decades and is grounded in portraying the wooded world. From his early etchings to present day photo-based prints, Raab’s work portrays the iconic Canadian forest, emphasizing the difference between short-term and long-lasting perceptions of nature.
Using digital photographs as the foundation for his intaglio prints, Raab’s imagery reveals expanses of treed space that can be scrutinized from many perspectives–technically, spiritually, politically, and aesthetically. On a more personal level, these works can be reflected upon as metaphors for subjective experience. They provide the immersive experience of being in the woods, while also implying a certain fragility and vulnerability. Raab’s work asks viewers to leap between a number of constructs, especially between controlled nature understood as landscape and uncontrolled nature often referred to as wilderness.
Raab’s scenic prints rely on contrasting relationships. They constitute the interactions between colour and line, representation and abstraction, authenticity and fiction. These works bridge the gap between standing “here” and seeing what is “there.” His quiet though spectacular views of trees use the vanishing point for their scenic value.
The exhibition features variations on the forest subject as much as it presents the artist’s use of contemporary and traditional printmaking technologies in order to explore how formal, conceptual, and liminal processes come to animate the printmaker’s depictions of time and place. This combination of aesthetic, formal, theoretical, and practical concerns is revealed in a series of vitrines that include excerpts sourced from the artist’s photographs, technological apparatus, as well as the forest floor’s memento-mori.
Curated by Carla Garnet and organized by the Art Gallery of Peterborough.
Sponsored by New Gold Inc.
Artist's Talk with George Raab: Saturday, October 19, 5:30 to 6:30 p.m.
Curator's Talk: Saturday, October 19, 5:30 to 6:30 p.m.
Opening Reception: Saturday, October 19, 6:30 to 8:00 p.m.
Family Art Saturday: Saturday, November 2, 1:00 to 3:00 p.m.
Bollokscraft Xine Launch & Print-Along: Thursday, November 14, 7:00 to 9:00 p.m.
Community Perspectives Tour with Gail Anderson-Dargatz: Thursday, December 5, 7:30 p.m.
Monochrom Sunset (English Bay - Oppenheimer Park), 2006
installation view, Artspeak
Photo: Scott Massey
Landscape looms large within the public imagination of Canadians. Canada’s natural landscape is vast, changeable and diverse. There is a deep cultural attachment to the landscape; nature and culture are intimately intertwined. The land is something to be owned, consumed, viewed and pictured.
As conventional perspectives about our relationship to nature continue to shift, artistic practices over the past many decades have sought to deconstruct pastoral and picturesque approaches to representing the landscape in order to question the ways we think about nature and how it has been depicted.
In 1996, curator Annette Hurtig organized a group exhibition at the Kamloops Art Gallery entitled The Culture of Nature that investigated current artistic approaches (at the time) to the history of landscape painting.
Landscape Revised revisits this topic seventeen years later through a selection of diverse formal and conceptual strategies that unpack ideas of landscape, nature and wilderness. It recognizes the enduring interest in this subject and the continuum of ideas that are persistently taken up by visual artists in a variety of ways. Artists in the exhibition include Arabella Campbell, Franklin Carmichael, Althea Thauberger, Donald Lawrence, Mark Soo and Jin-me Yoon. Running concurrently with Into the Woods: Etchings by George Raab, which showcases a major survey of Raab’s sustained commitment to meticulously and expressively depicting his natural surroundings, Landscape Revised offers insight into a range of other methodologies by artists who address landscape through video, installation, painting, performance and photography.
This selection of works examines the cultural markers implicit in the picturesque, domesticated and feminized landscape. As artists continue to dissect the modern condition as it relates to the land, Hurtig’s sentiments still reign true: “How we think about the land, about nature, about the relationship between culture and nature has become one of the principal intellectual battlefields of our time.”
Curated by Charo Neville, KAG Curator
A digital publication accompanying this exhibition is available by here.
Opening Reception: Saturday, October 19, 6:30 to 8:00 p.m.
Photo etching, aquatint and watercolour
Photo: Donald Lawrence
Organized by the Myers School of Art at the University of Akron, Monumental Ideas in Miniature Books is an international collection of hand -made books including work by Kamloops-based artist Darlene Kalynka. At a time when books and print are increasingly turning to digital media, this exhibition invites the viewer to embrace the book as a physical object. The artist book is something not only to be read for its content, but to be taken in as a crafted work of art. The books showcase a wide range of printmaking techniques including traditional relief, intaglio, lithograph, serigraph and digital processes. The viewer is invited to investigate the content and technique of artist’s books and explore the possibilities of what a book can be.
Curated by Hui-Chu Ying, Professor of Art, Myers School of Art, University of Akron.
Opening Reception: Saturday, September 21, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.
Mini Book Printing and Binding Workshop: Saturday, October 26, 1:00 to 3:00 p.m.
Tsu Heidei Shugaxtutaan, part 1 & 2, 2011
Courtesy of the artist
Beat Nation describes a generation of artists who juxtapose urban youth culture with Aboriginal identity to create innovative and unexpected new works—in painting, sculpture, installation, performance and video—that reflect the current realities of Aboriginal peoples today.
Since the early 1990s, hip hop has been a driving force of activism for urban Aboriginal youth in communities across the Americas. The roots of this music have been influential across disciplines and have been transformed to create dynamic forums for storytelling and indigenous languages, as well as new modes of political expression. In the visual arts, artists remix, mash up and weave together the old with the new, the rural with the urban, traditional and contemporary as a means to rediscover and reinterpret Aboriginal culture within the shifting terrain of the mainstream.
While this exhibition takes its starting point from hip hop, it branches out to refer to pop culture, graffiti, fashion and other elements of urban life. Artists create unique cultural hybrids that include graffiti murals with Haida figures, sculptures carved out of skateboard decks, abstract paintings with form-line design, live video remixes with Hollywood films, and hip hop performances in Aboriginal dialects, to name a few. Beat Nation brings together artists from across the continent—from the West Coast as far north as Alaska and Nunavut, as far east as Labrador and south to New Mexico—and reveals the shared connections between those working in vastly different places.
As Aboriginal identity and culture continue to change, and as artists reinvent older traditions into new forms of expression, their commitment to politics, to storytelling, to Aboriginal languages, to the land and rights remains constant, whether these are stated with drums skins or turntables, natural pigments or spray paint, ceremonial dancing or break dancing.
The exhibition is accompanied by a full-colour catalogue, published by the Vancouver Art Gallery and available at the Gallery Store.
Organized and circulated by the Vancouver Art Gallery and based on an initiative of grunt gallery. Beat Nation is co-curated by Kathleen Ritter, Associate Curator (former), Vancouver Art Gallery and Tania Willard, a Secwepemc artist, designer and curator.
This exhibition was made possible with the generous support of Mark McCain & Caro MacDonald/ Eye and I, the Audain Foundation for the Visual Arts, Gary R. Bell, Rick Erickson & Donna Partridge, and the Killy Foundation.
Exhibition Tour with Co-Curator Tania Willard: Saturday, June 29, 5:30 to 6:30 p.m.
Opening Reception: Saturday, June 29, 6:30 to 8:00 p.m.
Making New Beats: Aboriginal Youth Art Workshops: Monday, July 15 to Friday, July 19
This 2013 Curator’s Choice exhibition is the ninth annual presentation of work by a student graduate from Thompson Rivers University Visual Arts Department. Selected by Kamloops Art Gallery Assistant Curator Craig Willms, this year's Curator’s Choice features Elizabeth Warner’s Strings.
Through an ambitious installation of meticulously constructed marionettes and video projection showing the marionettes performing in a surreal world, Warner examines nostalgia and loss. In this project, Warner utilizes stop-frame animation and puppetry to recreate recent events with her partner and family memories related to the loss of her brother. Her brother Nicholas’ memory pervades the video, floating amidst vignettes of imagined landscapes in which brother and sister share experiences. The artist has created a fictitious world that she wishes to share with her brother that exists alongside real experience, blurring the lines between memory and imagination.
Warner’s work questions the authenticity of longing in relation to nostalgia. The marionettes inhabit the Gallery, recalling memories of the puppet shows Warner’s grandfather would perform for the grandchildren. A life-sized marionette depicting Warner’s grandfather stands in the space overlooking the exhibition as the quirky movements of the puppets in the video recall the movements of the grandfather and reflect the disjointed recollections of memory.
Curated by Craig Willms, KAG Assistant Curator
Opening Reception: Saturday, June 29, 6:30 to 8:00 pm
Fair-weather forces (water level), 2008
Stainless steel stanchions, velvet ropes, electronic and mechanical systems, ultrasonic sensor
Installation view, Catriona Jeffries Gallery
Weather Systems presents work by Vancouver-based artist Germaine Koh from the past two decades and new works made specifically for this exhibition. The selected work relates natural and human systems by focusing on the inter-relatedness of conditions in the built and natural environment that might otherwise seem disparate. It brings together the artist’s series of three Fair-weather forces works for the first time. This series comprises architectonic interventions that suggest a reciprocal relationship between human behavior and natural or meteorological phenomena, namely wind, sunlight and tides.
For example, in Fair-weather forces: wind speed, 2002, a metal turnstile rotates at varying speeds determined by the wind velocity outside the gallery, as measured by an anemometer. Similarly, in Fair-weather forces (sun:light), 2005, the gallery’s interior light levels are linked to changing exterior light levels, effectively defeating the purpose of the artificial lighting system. In the most recent project from the series, Fair-weather forces (water level), 2008, metal stanchions are connected by velvet ropes that slide up and down corresponding to the current levels of a coastal body of water (transmitted in real time over the Internet by a custom-built sensor that measures tide levels).
Koh’s work often links the space of the gallery or museum with the outside environment or actively intervenes in the institution to reveal tensions between the public and private realms. In an intervention into the gallery’s everyday operations and outward appearance entitled Prayers, a fog machine situated at the entrance to the building transmits Morse code versions of data entered on a staff member’s computer and a computer within the Gallery. Prayers signals activities within the Gallery to the outside. It also associates technological advances— such as binary languages, the telegraph, steam power and smoke signals—with today's electronic digital communication systems.
Through her interventions into technology and everyday systems, Koh creates alternate networks of transmission and exchange. By bringing apparently unrelated activity together, disrupting social conventions or transposing one site onto another, Koh shifts expectations of these systems so they become un-naturalized and can be experienced from a shifted perspective. Her work exists in an undefined space, both as art object and functional object, wherein new meaning is produced.
Supported by the Vancouver Foundation and the Hamber Foundation
Sponsored by Willms Design and Terra Restaurant
BY4Y Workshop Creative Cartography: Thursday, April 4, 4:00 to 6:00 pm
Artist’s Talk with Germaine Koh: Saturday, April 6, 5:30 to 6:30 pm
Opening Reception: Saturday, April 6, 6:30 to 8:00 pm
Turning Towards the Sun: An Adventure on Foot: Saturday, May 4, 1:00 to 3:00 pm
Click here for a copy of the Teachers' Guide for this exhibition
Pachena Lighthouse, 2012
oil on canvas, frosted glass
Place in Memory explores the relationship between people and place and reveals the common ground found in our memories of significant spaces. Tara Bauer interviews elderly people about their sense of home and community and asks her subjects to describe important places they feel tied to and resonate for them. She then creates paintings of “place in memory” based on these descriptions. The works are overlaid with text taken from the interviews and memory maps drawn by the subjects accompany some of the works, weaving together memories through a variety of sources. Much like memories, frosted glass in front of Bauer’s paintings obscures imagery with cut out windows revealing elements while other details are fuzzy or lost.
Baby Boyz Gotta Indian Pony, 2008
C print, 60" x 48"
The Kamloops Art Gallery’s 2013 exhibition program focuses its attention on the idea of “place.” Situated within active ranching country, the first exhibitions of the year look at how the mythology of the West has developed in this region and opens up a conversation about our relationship to this place. Western brings together key works by artists who have addressed the idea of the “west” and the “western” in diverse and complex ways. This group exhibition aims to take stock of the history of settlement in the west and to reflect upon how this history and its manifestations have shaped the popular imagination. It includes an absurd and yet strongly metaphorical large-scale installation by the artist collective DRIL that features the tumbleweed as the main protagonist. It also comprises a provocative work from the KAG’s permanent collection by Cornelia Wyngaarden that plays on the sexual stereotype of the “Marlboro Man” as well as the resulting installation from Lawrence Paul Yuxweluptun’s polemical performance An Indian Act Shooting the Indian Act, also from the KAG's collection. Dana Claxton's Mustang Suite photographs, produced like slick advertisements, portray the complexities and contemporary realities of the "Indian" family through hybrid portraits. The exhibition also features Louise Noguchi's complete early video series Language of the Rope, in which the artist studies the phenomenon of re-staged and re-enacted cowboy culture. At times exaggerating these inherited and ingrained mythologies, the work in the exhibition challenges the “western” trope from multivalent perspectives, offering an un-romanticized pithy view of relations between cowboys, the North American frontier and First Nations peoples. In conjunction with an exhibition of paintings by artist and rancher, Sonia Cornwall, the exhibition re-frames the “Wild West” as an ideological space through a post-colonial lens of East and West and male and female. This key grouping of Cornwall’s work offers insite into life on a ranch near Kamloops and demonstrates the artist's dedication to depicting the landscape and everyday scenes.
Western is curated by Charo Neville, KAG Curator
Sonia Cornwall: Round up is curated by Roger Boulet, Guest Curator
Sponsored by Funk Signs, the BC Cattlemen's Association and The Plaza Hotel
Exhibition Tour with Charo Neville: Friday, January 18, 5:30 to 6:30 pm
Opening Reception: Friday, January 18, 6:30 to 8:00 pm
Family Art Saturdays: Saturday, February 2, 1:00 to 3:00 pm
Vancouver Indigenous Media Arts Festival: Thursday, February 7, 7:00 pm
Community Perspectives Exhibition Tour with Garry Gottfriedson: Thursday, February 28, 7:00 pm
A Narrative Corpse, 2011-12
A Narrative Corpse brings together the comic strip format of sequential narrative and the Surrealist game of "exquisite corpse." In this collaborative project, artists from the region are invited to continue a chain story through a comic strip format that is painted directly onto the walls of The Cube gallery. Each artist receives only the final panel of the previous artist's work and is given the freedom to continue on their own tangent through a three-panel comic strip format. After the final contribution is revealed, the walls of The Cube will be transformed into one large-scale comic book created from a multi-perspective narrative.
Kim Clarke Photography
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