April 7 to June 23, 2018
CIRCLES & WIGS is a collaborative practice between Jessica Groome and Ashleigh Bartlett creating drawings, paintings and installations. Living in different cities, they have conducted intensive self-directed residencies in each other’s studios since 2015 to produce new work playing off each other’s practices. For this exhibition, the two artists worked from their respective cities for six months before coming together at the Kamloops Art Gallery for a two-week residency to complete the project in The Cube.
The exhibition uses Imi Knoebel’s series of paintings titled 24 fargen für Blinky (24 Colours for Blinky), as a departure point. Knoebel painted the series in 1977 as a tribute to his friend, artist Blinky Palermo, following Blinky's death earlier that year. This was a turning point in Knoebel’s practice because of his embrace of painting and his selection of colours based on his feelings for his friend and the works he left behind. Groome and Bartlett will determine the other’s palette from a distance based on the idea of each other from memory. Using the selected palette, one artist creates circles while the other creates wigs consisting of shredded paintings. They will finish and install the work at the Kamloops Art Gallery in the final week leading up to the exhibition, and will continue with an open studio and an artist talk in the week following the opening. The title comes from an adolescent declaration of friendship that has come to have tongue-in-cheek connotations and a casualness in the abbreviated “BFF” shared through text messaging. CIRCLES & WIGS was concocted from text, Skype and email communication for the artists’ initial collaborative exhibition and continues in this manner since the artists still reside in different cities. They are poking fun at the term, but also embrace it as a link that identifies Groome and Bartlett as being something more than only being collaborators.
CIRCLES & WIGS Circle and Wig Pairing 1, Toronto, 2015 mixed media dimensions variable Image courtesy of the Artists
Curated by Craig Willms, Assistant Curator, Kamloops Art Gallery
View images of the exhibition here.
April 14 to June 30, 2018
Much art of the last several centuries has been preoccupied with the creation of space, from the illusionistic space of Renaissance art to the presence of depth that can exist even within pure abstraction. Divided into three sections, this exhibition presents a range of historical and contemporary artworks by more than 30 artists that together communicate some of the countless ways artists have contemplated space – from its optical perceptions, to its emotional impact and finally, to its geographical or topographical limits.
Dennis A. Oppenheim
Renée Van Halm
The exhibition begins by evoking the early twentieth century, which saw the replacement of deep illusionistic space in painting with something more fractured and far more suggestive. In Canada, artists such as Emily Carr, B.C. Binning, Maxwell Bates and other West Coast modernists adapted European and British influences to the specificities of British Columbia. Many of their methods of fracturing the picture plane have been re-interpreted by contemporary artists from today’s perspective.
The exhibition takes its title from a book by the same name authored in 1958 by Gaston Bachelard. In The Poetics of Space he writes particularly about the home, where as children we have our first momentous encounters of space. Drawing inspiration from this, the second section of the exhibition introduces elements of intimacy and memory, featuring works about houses and homes that impart their mysteries, histories or, in some cases, the abuses that lie within.
The third and final section of the exhibition features works in which the artists have conceptualized space in non-traditional ways, mapping it according to their own purposes or acknowledging its layered socio-cultural histories. These artists use various methods to map or define space – some through performative actions, others through investigations of social use, and still others through depictions of signs that register spatial borders. In its totality, The Poetics of Space offers myriad ways to consider how we experience, create and contain space, perhaps in order to save ourselves from its infinity.
The Poetics of Space is organized and circulated by the Vancouver Art Gallery and curated by Daina Augaitis, Chief Curator Emerita and Emmy Lee Wall, Assistant Curator, Vancouver Art Gallery. Across the Province is generously supported by the Killy Foundation.
Annie PootoogookListening to the Radio, 2005–06 pencil crayon, ink on paper 41.6 x 51.0 cm Collection of the Vancouver Art Gallery, Gift of Claudia Beck and Andrew Gruft Photo: Trevor Mills, Vancouver Art Gallery
Curated by Daina Augaitis, Chief Curator Emerita and Emmy Lee Wall, Assistant Curator, Vancouver Art Gallery.
View images of the exhibition here.