Soul Catcher, n.d.
Frost-laden Cedars, Big Cauchon Lake, 1915-1916
Duncan De Kergommeaux
Painting from a Pine Forest, No. 1, 1957
Winter on the Rideau Canal, c.2010
“We live in a beautiful city and I think many people who live here do not realize what a special thing we have here,”
"The challenge for me is always to capture what a place looks like and feels like but also to have a relationship with the painting as I am making it. To be open to what may happen in the studio. I don’t start with an exact idea of what the painting will be when I am finished. All I know is what I want it to feel like- and I never really know how that will come about.
I almost always do my paintings in one go- one session in the studio. This is to allow for clarity in purpose, but also to give the work a sense of immediacy. I want the paintings to be direct and fluid. There is a fine line between overworked, unfinished, and resolved paintings, and I am always trying to find that balance.
I waste a lot of paint, and have many frustrating days where I scrape off a whole day’s work onto the floor, only to start over the next day. But in each attempt, I become clearer about what I am painting, so that in the end, the work is more concise. I want the paint to be allowed to be paint. Sometimes there are drips or imperfections, but I leave them because sometimes it is those ‘mistakes’ that anchor the work for me.”
Life and Death, 2005
"This is a relative or a friend who has come back to visit an old grave. You know that it is an old grave because the plants have grown up around it."
now i’m wondering a whole lot about the Ashevak family, because all i knew about before the last 3 minutes was Kenojuak.
There are quite a few talented Ashevaks (although I’m not sure if they are all related or not). Check out Karoo Ashevak’s work, he does these whimsical, expressionist sculptures of shamans.
Also Kenojuak adopted eight or so children and many of them went on to become talented/successful artists in their own right. There are a lot of Inuit art “dynasties”” like that and its pretty nifty.
Composition (Houses in Cape Dorset), 2011
From Canadian Art:
Inuit drawings often have an aerial perspective. Historically, these views were based on the elders’ recollections of places visited to camp or hunt and mapped out as bird’s-eye views on the page. Ohotaq’s perspective resembles the way many elders perceive their world: places are identified by memories of living on the land and of landmarks within that space. Ohotaq often writes in syllabics at the bottom of his drawings, indicating details about the scene he is depicting… In Composition (Houses in Cape Dorset) (2011) he writes, “these are the houses in the RC Valley (where the Roman Catholic Church was) except one which didn’t get built.” The fact that these landscapes are identified is very typical of Inuit art. Landscapes done by Inuit artists, no matter how stylized or abstracted, are seldom mere impressions of a landscape; they reflect records and memories of a recognizable site.
Ohotaq is part of a shrinking generation of artists that was formative in the creation of Inuit art as it is now known. These new works expand on Inuit landscape traditions. The colour, the form and the aerial perspective combine in a delicious mixture to enliven and animate Ohotaq’s representations of the place from which he comes. The expansion in scale to large-format drawings also helps to convey the vastness of the Arctic landscape. For inspiration, Ohotaq looks not to a colonial art-historical past, but rather to his forefathers, the artists before him and beside him, and to the land itself.
Sleeping Beauty | Randy Grskovic
This a collage from prints of original negatives i’ve collected. The young woman in the casket is from a 35mm camera circa 1950’s. The plastic flowers are from a 4” x 5” film from the 1940’s.
An element in this collage is the quality of the prints, dictated by their physical media. The young woman is grainy while the plastic flowers are crystal clear. The flowers are lit and shot in a studio on professional camera while the image of the woman was taken by a presumed amatuer trying document an important memory. This memory is somehow plasticised in the physical film.
There are a lot of conversations could arise from these pairings. I’m interested in the future of death in our information age. Soon we will have grown adults who will have had their entire life, from birth to death, documented and databased through social media.
Will a Klout algorithm be writing our obituaries?
Death often plays a very prominent roll in my artwork. I can’t help but be attracted to it. For me, it is a shared commonality for all life, and I think it is important for us to address it, whatever your beliefs.
"From my rotting body, flowers shall grow and I am in them and that is eternity." - Edvard Munch
But Edvard, what if all the flowers we have left are plastic?