JAN 6 - FEB 6
Mark Crofton Bell Escape from Photography
Erika Kierulf No Peeking
In Escape From Photography, Toronto artist Mark Bell addresses photography's strangle hold on representation in the 20th Century, and loosens its grip. Using imagery of photography's first 'victims'; the infirm, insane and criminal, Bell has reproduced their images in shades of off-black on black panels. Interestingly, his painted images are unreproduceable using photographic means. Bell's skillfully absent paintings touch on the subjectivity of these photographs as 'History' and the relationship between the photographer and his subject. Erika Kierulf, on the other hand, is using photography as less of a surveillance tool and more as a documentor of her daily activities.
In No Peeking, Montreal-based Erika Kierulf is utilizing the medium to demonstrate the normalcy and subtle beauty of her life, even through her queer (read: deviant) relationship status. This is presented as the simple beauty Kierulf sees around her; in the domestic landscape, in her friends interacting, her partner. Whereas Kierulf enforces her normalcy by situating herself within the banality of her subject matter, Bell instills a slo panic about the 'normalcy' of his chosen imagery. As Kierulf draws us in with her beautiful captured 'instants', we understand these as random moments, that she has captured somewhat through happenstance. This gets complicated when posited next to Bell's work, as he questions his own faith in the objectivity of his source images, insisting on skepticism toward the objectivity of all reproduced images.
FEB 19 - MAR 23
Barb Webb, curator The Female Vulgar
"The only landscapes I have ever been interested in are the personal ones, the ones that map a psychosexual terrain. That intriguing zone where one is often hurled by a tornado of theory, politics and lives lived. The works in this proposed exhibition revel in the enchanted and libidinal. Each of these artists has crossed a border- piercing the skin of their inner lives, breaking the membrane to the transgressive, pornographic and playful exposing the female vulgar and the pleasure it brings. Barb Webb This exhibition turns the spotlight on the troublesome and tempting work of photographer Lise Beaudry and painters Barb Webb, Catherine Heard and Eliza Griffiths."
MAR 31 - APR 27
Sara Graham Open City
Leah Garnett is to word as wave is to
In Open City, Calgary artist Sara Graham examines the structure of suburban geography. With her drawings of roadways and overpasses as tightly wound balls and paintings of parklands within city territory as color coded anomalies, Graham shines a light on the dysfunction of this 'relovution' in urban planning as a pacifier and placator of the populace.
Leah Garnett of Halifax presents is to word as wave is to a study of space and communication. With her iron and plexiglas wavetanks, Garnett references the language of science to bring attention to our ability and disability with communication. The wavetanks garnett has cunstructed are operated by the viewer but as expected but because of their weight distribution they cut out if not constantly being activated by the viewer. The disappointmentfelt at their inability to complete their expected function is tempered by a soundtrack Garnett has produced of distorted clips from her own conversations.
MAY 5 - JUN 8
Andrea Cooper Starring: Part 2
Cheryl Pagurek A Day in the Life and Balancing Act
Andrea Cooper's work deals with her sense of displacement as a woman having grown up surrounded by the influence of the Hollywood Star System, in a cultural context where it can have little to no physical manifestation. To reconcile this, Cooper has transformed herself into a 50 Ft. Hollywood siren, lounging and looming over the St. John's skyline.
Cheryl Pagurek's work contrasts with Cooper's in that, where Cooper transposes her iconic persona onto the a diminishing landscape, Pagurek claims the spectacular or overwhelming public events: Albanian refugees leaving Kosovo, School shootings in middle America, Netanyahu reacting to a suicide bombing. These events become images, static and flat, translated to surfaces and infiltrate the domestic. Her photographs become a subversive slipcover masking purses, coffee makers and vacuums allowing the volatile 'outside' to penetrate our complacent interiors.
JUN 16 - JUL 13
James Johnstone 1001 Push Up Man
Undrea Norris and Elizabeth MacKenzie Pink
James Johnstone Presents the New 1001 Push Up Man is a collaborative installation by Montreal-based artists James Prior and Clarke Ferguson employing infomercial-style marketing techniques ( a touring showcase, a workout video, and memorabilia), essentially to sell a farcical masculine ideal. Under their thin veil, Prior and Ferguson attempt to deconstruct this ideal through the example of a relationship between athlete (1001 Push Up Man) and coach (James Johnstone).
With their installation Pink, Undrea Norris and Elizabeth MacKenzie tackle the complexities of 'Feminine Identity'. They attempt this utilizing text written by MacKenzie, sculptural elements constructed by Norris and a collaboratively constructed environment of mirrors, pink-toned advertising spreads and a 'pink brick road' of bathroom scales. Eastern Edge Gallery will split the space down the middle, creating a Battle-of-the Sexes atmosphere, allowing the viewer to consider their own identity's construction and to assess their culpability in enforcing this dichotomy.
JUL 21 - AUG 24
Vera Greenwood L'Hotel Sophie Calle
In Vera Greenwood's latest installation, L'Hotel Sophie Calle, she documents her clumsy attempts to surveil French artist Sophie Calle. This work is a response to Calle's own practice including her La Filature, where she proposed her mother hire a P.I. to follow her every move. Greenwood presents the artefacts of her project (undertaken while doing her residency at the Canada Council Paris Studio). Her museological presentation, however, leaves as much information about her own character as it leaves little of Calle's. Greenwood's diary of the events, seen through her writings in the exhibition implicate our own participation in the viewing of this installation, leaving us to try to separate our surveillance from Greenwood's and then Calle's.
SEPT 1 - OCT 5
Monique Tobin, curator Graffiti
Undrea Norris and Elizabeth MacKenzie Pink
Work by: J. Barry, Stephanie Barry, Greg Bennett, Tara Bryan, Will Gill, Jim Maunder, Mikiki, Elayne Noble, Undrea Norris, Jerry Ropson, Isabella St. John, Allyson Stuckless, Anonymous
"I don't want my art to be ....flotsam."
"If I can see it, it's mine." - a 'come from away' artist (ie not from Newfoundland) comments on the politics of marking artistic territory in landscape work.
The proposal is simple: artists confronting internally or externally imposed art conventions within the confines of public presentation in a gallery and without. And the Rogue Gallery - Eastern Edge Gallery's own dissident forum that subverts the whole exhibition selection process - is left bare, presented as an invitation for all to write on the walls. As curator, delineating a separate gallery space as public forum is important, symbolizing the very need for critical dialogue in the community.
At the core, this exhibition asks artists about their individual artistic issues and demons. And the layers of subtext, of subversion are infinite, complex. So while some works provocatively solicit response from the viewer, other artists engage themselves in the act; documenting only the immediate self-absorption of creating art. Will Gill is interested in graffiti's rough physicality and its directness. He will construct a false gyprock wall in the gallery, then, at the exhibition's start, he will brand, tar, cut-away, scrape and hack into the wall. "The results can be intensely beautiful regardless of subject matter. Ironically aesthetics are rarely a concern of the person making the marks save elaborate tags in big cities. You are at the mercy of time and the tools you are working with." A few artists explore graffiti as mantra, others asking the viewer directly to confront public perceptions of art. Jim Maunder elevates the status of bathroom stall graffiti, recreating a homophobic dialogue in metal and neon, confusing it then with advertising. Graffiti becomes a metaphor for the position art assumes in a world where computerized graphic design and advertising dominates our visual culture. Other work is more unobtrusive, Mikiki's written literally on the body, his own performance art space. Outdoor installations involve both permissions sought from property owners and permissions granted passersby to deface the work. This expands the notion of graffiti, some works asking us to redefine the relationship between public space and the subversive or artistic voice, be they one and the same.
It seems fitting to me that, collectively, the works in this exhibition engage a kind of anonymous group dialogue about conventions in the creation and reception of art works in a town without a tradition of art criticism.
OCT 13 - NOV 16
Michelle Karch-Ackerman Lost Margaret
Michelle Karch-Ackerman's work points to the parallels of nature and the human spirit. Interested in the diminishing physicality of living objects and our understanding of 'loss', Karch-Ackerman draws a strong reference from the character of Lost Margaret from L.M. Montgomery's novel, "Anne's House of Dreams". This character, a young girl was lost at sea and can act as an embodiment of local histories involving loss at sea. Karch-Ackerman has created an entire wardrobe for a girl from birth to ten years old and hopes to encourage knitters from the local community to join her in a 'knitting bee' to add to this wardrobe, in mourning and in dedication to the life of one lost girl.
NOV 23 - DEC 20
Cathia Finkel The Body of My Geography
Elayne Greeley Some Facts Remain
Cathia Finkel uses digital photography and collage to explore the idea of cartography. Starting from the physical geography, Finkel layers images of maps, text, small sculptural figures and found objects onto large abstracted casts of female bodies. Greeley paints women moving through domestic spaces. Concerned with ideas of fragmentation and fragility of memories, Greeley layers her surfaces with stream of consciousness writing and conversations with subjects (who choose the space and activities they are represented as engaged in). This is her attempt to mark/demarcate personal history through her own relationships.