JONATHAN THÉROUX, MFA Thesis Exhibition: TOUR, à/at Galerie Karsh-Masson Gallery

Galerie Karsh-Masson Gallery
Ottawa City Hall
110 Laurier Ave. West
Vernissage August 24, 5:30-7:30pm
August 19-29, 2017

Inspiré par le potentiel allégorique et symbolique de l’assemblage d’objets dans l’espace, l’exposition multidisciplinaire Tour présente le tâtonnement comme procédé de recherche sur le langage et sur la formulation de sens. L’exposition avance les techniques de la peinture, de la sculpture et vidéos.

Inspired by the allegorical and symbolic potential for assembling objects in space, Tour utilizes painting, sculpture and video to present trial and error as the process used in language and meaning-making research.



Presented with the University of Ottawa, Studio Sixty Six is pleased to present Falling: The Past is Always Present, the thesis exhibition of MFA Candidate and new media artist Michael Ashley.


In this body of work, I ponder the mechanisms of memory and study the power of images by appropriating and re-presenting historical media related to the First World War. Stimulated by the centenary of what was originally called “The Great War”, this work considers the conflict as a crisis of modernity, and suggests that its echoes reverberate into the present.

The products of modern industry, such as rapid-fire artillery, the machine gun, armoured vehicles, and chemical weapons, made World War One the first large-scale industrialized conflict and caused destruction on an unprecedented scale. Innovations like the use of airplanes literally moved armed conflict into a new dimension. Aviation technology advanced rapidly during the war years and individual pilots were presented to the public as knights of the air, the heroes of a new era. This was essential to the propagandists because the meat grinder of trench warfare offered few opportunities for individual distinction. But ultimately, the invention of the airplane also implied the invention of the crash, an especially devastating development at a time when parachutes were unavailable.

Many pilots’ memoirs attest to the fear of a fiery crash. Many wondered whether it was better to stay in a burning plane or airship and risk being incinerated or jump and ensure a cleaner demise. This dilemma is illustrated in a painting called “The Fall” from the collection of the Canadian War Museum. In it, a German aviator has chosen to jump free of his burning aircraft. The imagery of falling touches on the casualties of war, referred to as the fallen, as well as biblical imagery of the fall, the fallen angels, and the fall from grace. The materialist religion of modernity is based on faith in science and technology, which can contribute to the pride that leads to such a fall. The myth of Icarus is a tidy encapsulation of this motif.

I use audio-video installation in this work. These time-based media are most appropriate because they allow me to re-use still images, film, and songs from the 1914 to 1918 era and re-present them in an evocative way. Historical images and sounds help recreate the ambiance of the era and their presentation using temporal media emphasizes the passage of time and the fading of memory. Using audio-visual material in an installation provides the audience with a multi-sensory experience that implicates them physically and enhances the artwork’s affective quality.

I would like the viewers of my work to consider the precarity of human life; to reflect on the hubris that leads to destructive conflict; to question the role of technology in culture; and to feel the passing of time while understanding the immanence of the past.


My work can be interpreted as a condemnation of the glorification of war and a critique of blind-faith in progress.


Sarah Fuller, Panorama, Old Tree, 2017, Archival Inkjet Print, 120” x 43”.

Sarah Fuller, Panorama, Old Tree, 2017, Archival Inkjet Print, 120” x 43”.

SARAH FULLER, MFA Thesis Exhibition: And perhaps in me someone very old still hears the living sound of wood

The OAG Annex presents MFA candidate Sarah Fuller's thesis exhibition: And perhaps in me someone very old still hears the living sound of wood
August 18 – September 24, 2017
OAG Annex, 110 Laurier Avenue West, Ottawa

Opening Reception: Thursday August 24, 2017, 5:30 – 7:30 pm (TBC)

A landscape, a record – carved out, reverberating through time and timber. 

In the 19th century the old growth white pine trees of the Ottawa valley were logged extensively and shuttled downriver for export. Driven by the British Navy’s demand for lumber, the wholesale extraction and shipment of ancient trees across the Atlantic Ocean was a tangible manifestation of a colonial ideology that laid the foundation for Canada as a nation.

I think of those trees often. What did it feel like to bob down river and roll across the sea?  What did they looklike – what did this land look like with them in it?

What a loss this is.

In this exhibition I use photography, video, sound and installation to create space in which to meditate on the trees that were once here and the persistent mark their extraction has left on the current landscape.

- Sarah Fuller

KIZI SPIELMANN ROSE, MFA Thesis Exhibition, Pulse at Karsh-Masson Gallery

Karsh-Masson Gallery
Ottawa City Hall
110 Laurier Ave. West
August 5-15
Vernissage August 10, 5:30-7:30pm

In Pulse, Kizi Spielmann Rose presents a series of paintings whose undulating surfaces are reminiscent of rippling water and topographic mapping. They are created through a process of layering multiple coats of pigment atop one another and finally etching through the top layers to reveal the bottom. Serpentine lines carve their way through oil stick, revealing hues of oil pastel beneath. The topographic illusion is produced as the lines approach and retreat from each other, tracing the contours of some unspecified terrain. These works share an affiliation with the modernist tendency towards procedural and material-driven abstractions that foreground the painting as object, but simultaneously complicate this by embracing a kind of pictorialism through visual allusions to light, liquid, and mapping.  The paintings on view in Pulse vary widely within the theme. A network quality exists between these works, where similar materials, procedures, forms and techniques are stretched, manipulated, and experimented with in order to produce difference within repetition and a sense of rhythmic variation between discreet paintings. 

Kizi Spielmann Rose is a graduate student in painting at the University of Ottawa, and holds a BFA from NSCAD University. Recent exhibitions include Fresh Paint/New Constructions at Montreal’s Art Mûr gallery and Wild Wild Life, a solo graduate exhibition at Anna Leonowens Gallery in Halifax. Accolades include a Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council grant and the Robert Pope Foundation Painting Scholarship.


KYLE BUSTIN, MFA Thesis Exhibition, Conflicts in Neverland, Gallery 115/ Performance on TWITCH

Gallery 115
100 Laurier Ave or 600 Cumberland (side entrance)
University of Ottawa Visual Arts Department

Kyle Bustin, MFA '17, will be presenting his thesis works at Gallery 115 from August 21-30th with an accompanying live streaming performance found on TWITCH starting July 17th and ending August 4th.

NOTE: Kyle Bustin's live-streaming performance of Conflicts In Neverland will now begin Friday July 21

LINDSEY WILSON, MFA Thesis Exhibition, Intimate Entanglements, Gallery 101

Gallery 101, 51B rue Young Ottawa
July 20-29, 2017
Vernissage July 27th 5-8pm

Intimate Entanglements is the MFA thesis exhibition of emerging artist Lindsey Wilson, and is presented at Gallery 101 in collaboration with the University of Ottawa Department Of Visual Arts. Lindsey’s work is process driven and is grounded in an intimate relationship with craft materials. Working in a multidisciplinary fashion, but primarily with textile based materials, her practice investigates the complexity of bodily relationships to materials, objects, and the spaces they occupy. Invested in queer and feminist interventions in the production of art and knowledge, Intimate Entanglements is an exploration of the practice of dyeing wool with plant based materials, described by the artist as a sort of “kitchen alchemy”. Incorporating techniques such as weaving, crochet, and hand-spinning, Wilson’s woolly installation invites the viewer to immerse themselves in a multisensory experience that encourages a reconsideration of domestic tasks as essential to producing knowledge and constructing identities. Tending to the work daily, the artist’s body is implicated in the slow process of dyeing and the work becomes at once sculptural and time-based.

Kizi Spielmann Rose, Submergence, 2016

Kizi Spielmann Rose, Submergence, 2016

Kyle Bustin, Regimented Chaos #1, 2016

Kyle Bustin, Regimented Chaos #1, 2016

KIZI SPIELMANN ROSE, KYLE BUSTIN, MFA '17, Fresh Paint/New Construction 2017 at Art Mûr

Among the selected artists for this year's Fresh Paint at Art Mûr in Montreal are MFA Candidates Kyle Bustin and Kizi Spielmann Rose.

July 15 – August 26, 2017
Opening reception: Saturday, July 15,
2017 from 3-5 p.m.
Fresh Paint / New Construction – 13th edition
Art Mûr, Montreal (QC)

Kizi Spielmann Rose, Sun and a Tide Pool, 2017. Acrylic, oil pastel and oil stick on panel, 24 x 30 inches

Kizi Spielmann Rose, Sun and a Tide Pool, 2017. Acrylic, oil pastel and oil stick on panel, 24 x 30 inches

KIZI SPIELMANN ROSE, MFA '17, RBC Painting Competition Finalist 2017

From the RBC Painting Competition:
Kizi Spielmann Rose wil be a 2017 graduate of the MFA program at the University of Ottawa, for which he received a Social Sciences and Humanities Council of Canada (SSHRC) grant. Sun and a Tide Pool employs oil stick over oil pastel, the scoring following a loose pattern of serpentine lines that run more-or-less parallel to one another and create the illusion of an undulating, illuminated surface. It illustrates his interest in one of painting’s fundamental dichotomies: the illusory potential of painted images to depict virtual light, space, and movement on the one hand, and the physical reality of pigment on a surface on the other. “My contribution to contemporary painting,” he writes, “involves a tightrope walk between process driven formalism and ambiguous illusionism. A history of abstract formalism is present in my work, but equally important is the evocative play of light across waves and the distortion of submerged forms beneath a liquid surface.”

The University of Ottawa Visual Arts Department congratulates Kizi on his nomination!

David Kaarsemaker, Portage 1, 2017. Oil and acrylic on canvas, 24 x 32 inches

David Kaarsemaker, Portage 1, 2017. Oil and acrylic on canvas, 24 x 32 inches

DAVID KAARSEMAKER, MFA '14, Finalist in RBC Painting Competition 2017

From the RBC Painting competition: 
David Kaarsemaker holds an MFA from the University of Ottawa and a BFA from Concordia. His paintings explore the dichotomy between illusory depth and material surface, making use of models created from photographs that reference idealism in architecture. He paints images that have become increasingly distorted, limiting access to them through a scrim of surface gestures. A lengthy process of projecting and re-projecting images onto cardboard models allows him to abstract the image before reconstituting it as a painted representation. In addition to the perspectival space represented, the under-painted and sanded-down brushwork functions both as an index of the gesture and as an allusion to such things as topographic maps or geological strata. He aims to convey both a sense of mental distance from the ostensible subjects of his paintings, and a glowing and tangible presence. Kaarsemaker is represented by Christina Parker Gallery in St. John’s and St.Laurent + Hill in Ottawa.

The University of Ottawa Visual Arts Department congratulates David on his nomination!

Étienne Tremblay-Tardif, Société-écran

Étienne Tremblay-Tardif, Société-écran


Curated by Heather Anderson and Sandra Dyck; Presented in partnership with the NAC's Canada Scene

05 June – 20 August 2017
Carleton University Art Gallery

Marking Carleton University Art Gallery’s 25th anniversary and Carleton University’s 75th anniversary, CUAG presents Open Edition. The exhibition looks back and looks forward, opening up multilayered conversations that explore the printmaking medium and its messages, past and present.

Open Edition features a compelling group of historical and contemporary prints selected from the University’s collection and made by Canadian and international artists from the sixteenth century to the present day. It brings these artworks into dialogue with contemporary prints and print-based installations by guest artists Ciara Phillips (Glasgow), Ningiukulu Teevee (Kinngait), Mohamed Thiam (Ottawa), Guillermo Trejo (Ottawa), Étienne Tremblay-Tardif (Montréal), Ericka Walker (Halifax) and Melanie Yugo (Ottawa).

Open Edition also includes A Galaxy Reconfigured, a special collection intervention by artist Guillermo Trejo featuring intriguing constellations of historic European prints selected from CUAG’s collection.

Open Edition is presented in partnership with the National Arts Centre’s Canada Scene.

Jessica Bell, Fits and Starts, Central Art Garage May 2017, photo by Julia Martin

Jessica Bell, Fits and Starts, Central Art Garage May 2017, photo by Julia Martin

JESSICA BELL, MFA '15, in Canadian Art

See a review of Jessica Bell's Fits & Starts exhibited at Ottawa's Central Art Garage in Canadian Art online HERE
The University of Ottawa's Visual Arts Department congratulates Jessica Bell on her stellar show.

Gillian King, Pyroclast. Cold wax medium, oil and raw pigments on canvas, 72x60 inches. 2016

Gillian King, Pyroclast. Cold wax medium, oil and raw pigments on canvas, 72x60 inches. 2016

GILLIAN KING, MFA '16, Winner of RBC Emerging Artist Award, Petry Award

The University of Ottawa Visual Arts Department would like to congratulate Gillian King, winner of both RBC Emerging Artist Award and the Nancy Petry Award in Painting!

Gillian King completed her MFA in 2016 at the University of Ottawa. Originally from Winnipeg, Manitoba she is currently based in Ottawa. Her work is firmly grounded in extensive research that connects “ancient art practices with our changing geographical landscapes” and the concept of the Anthropocene has led her to explore relationships between humans and animals. Gillian makes abstract paintings that emphasize material process, using cold wax medium, oil paint and powdered pigment to explore her visual methods. The jury was impressed by Gillian King’s formally inventive paintings that show “ambition and exuberance in her sense of scale and materiality. The physical traces of material in her paintings embody the very qualities of the cave paintings she is referencing. Her strongly affective works present a unique approach to both landscape painting and lyrical abstraction.” 

Artist Gillian King, photograph by Julia Martin

Artist Gillian King, photograph by Julia Martin

Gillian plans to visit the Lascaux caves in France as well as geologic volcanic Eifel sites in Germany between Bon and Trier. Themes in her work will be furthered by seeing “some of the first European Western cave paintings that depict nonhuman animal and human animal interactions” and advance her understanding and exploration of Paleolithic art histories and contemporary methods of painting. The jury was grateful for a strong support letter for Gillian from Andrew Wright, Director of the Department of Visual Arts at the University of Ottawa. 

Along with receiving the 2017 Nancy Petry Award, Gillian King is the recipient of the RBC Emerging Artist Award for Ottawa (2017) and was selected as the Ontario representative for the Robert McLaughlin Gallery's 50th Anniversary Exhibition, 'Ab NEXT' (2017) in Oshawa that features five emerging abstract painters from across Canada. Recent shows include “Becoming Animal” (solo 2016), Ottawa Art Gallery; La Maison des Artistes in Winnipeg, University of Marinette Wisconsin, PDA Projects, Ottawa and Karsh-Masson Gallery, Ottawa. Gillian also completed residencies at The Banff Centre for the Arts and Sparkbox Studios in Canada. --Text from the Petry Award

JULIA MARTIN, MFA '15, OVERSHARE, Solo Exhibition at PDA Projects

PDA Projects, Collector's Space
704 Somerset St., Ottawa ON
May 12 - May 30, 2017
Opening May 12


Oversharing saves lives:
I inherited a hoarder tendency. I’ve redirected this impulse from objects to digital photographs and text messages. Instead amassing the fleeting and intangible—it really keeps the clutter down.

I meticulously document atmosphere and conversations like my mother collects Windstone Fantasy Figurines. She’s all dragons, wizards and winged cats and I’m the light at certain times of day shimmering on the dust in Bunny’s fur.

My phone has become my studio. In an attempt to hold on to time, slippery and amorphous, I rely on this ever-present and ubiquitous archive. I have an unhealthy attachment to my phone, for months I had recurring dreams of cracking its glass. My phone had taken the place of teeth in subconscious fears of bodily decline.

I do what everyone with a camera phone does, I take pictures with a regularity unmatched by any generation before. Mundane, weird, meaningless, pornographic, ridiculous, significant, pretty pictures.

Plants and cats, clouds and sunsets, friends and not friends anymore, never friends again.
And in their vast number, and scope, they begin to form a portrait, an outline of a life.
A trace of time.

It was in following them backward that I saw something I hadn’t seen while living these moments.
I’ve been sick.
I’ve been sick for a while.
I took photos of my illness, harmless nights and days in bed with Netflix. Piles of tissues, captions complaining about “kitten hands” (this is not when your hands are full of kittens, that would be adorable, rather it’s when you find yourself overturning a hot mug of cider over yourself because you could not hold its weight). I saw my mother in her nursing home bed, her skin grey, saline being dropped in her eyes, juice through a straw. It’s not the same thing. We aren’t the same, but somehow there was me. My fingers blistered and raw, my tongue swollen, mounds of my hair pulled from the drain.

I don’t dream anymore of the glass cracking.
I dream of my hair on the floor.

I made these moments physical objects, made them multiples, I gave myself something solid and never-ending to hold on to as I slowly dissolve.

Fuck those dragons. They don’t do shit.


I think I’m developing carpal tunnel from holding my phone.
My phone is running out of memory and I drop it constantly.
Why do we always hurt the ones we love?

I’m not glib, I’m irreverent, and I would appreciate it if you note the difference.
It’s not that I don’t take my work seriously, it’s that I can’t take myself seriously. The doctors say I’m supposed to avoid stress, and so I guess I’m taking the Patch Adams approach to my own life. Laugh until it stops hurting.

When I did my MFA I missed only two classes. In contrast, I was chronically absent during undergrad, high school, and elementary school.
I am known more for my absence than presence.
I believe this is thematic of my practice.

I have shown in Toronto, Ottawa, and Guelph. I completed a month-long artist residency in Finland in November 2015 which explains all the dark photos of birch trees. I’ve made books that sold out and are now out of print and will stay that way. I’m working on others. I am included in the Karsh Masson exhibition of emerging photographers coming in September 2017.

Gillian King at her MFA thesis exhibition Becoming Animal, presented at the Ottawa Art Gallery, 2016

Gillian King at her MFA thesis exhibition Becoming Animal, presented at the Ottawa Art Gallery, 2016

GILLIAN KING, MFA '16, RBC Emerging Artist Award Finalist

The University of Ottawa Visual Arts Department congratulates MFA Alum Gillian King on her nomination for the RBC Emerging Artist Award!

Peacemaker, 2017 (detail) Laundered and quilted painting on muslin 60 x 36 inches (152 x 91 cm)

Peacemaker, 2017 (detail) Laundered and quilted painting on muslin 60 x 36 inches (152 x 91 cm)

JESSICA BELL MFA '15, Fits and Starts, Solo Exhibition at Central Art Garage

April 7 - May 31st.

"Because my heart is a muscle that rarely gets sore.”1

Central Art Garage is pleased to present Fits and Starts, Jessica Bell's second solo exhibition with the gallery.
Bell wades through expansive perspectives and approaches to formal abstraction as well as her personal history to domestic craft, engaging questions of privilege, permanence and visibility.
Joining mindful moments between her objects and the spaces they inhabit, Fits and Starts revels in repetition and care as Bell's means toward outward resolve and subsequent affection.

1Jan Verwoert, "A Prayer to Protest" in Tell Me What You Want, What You Really, Really Want , ed. Vanessa Ohlraun (Berlin: Piet Zwart Institute and Sternberg Press, 2010), 252.

Stanzie Tooth, 2017, Shadow Self, 19.5 x 16", oil on canvas

Stanzie Tooth, 2017, Shadow Self, 19.5 x 16", oil on canvas

STANZIE TOOTH, MFA '15, The Distance of the Moon, Solo Exhibition, General Hardware

March 9 – April 8, 2017
Opening: Thursday March 9 from 6 - 9 pm
1520 Queen Street West, Toronto, M6R 1A4
Wednesday - Saturday 12 - 6

Exhibition Text: Jessica Bell

If you want to know what has become of the work of Stanzie Tooth, the answer can be found in blue.

In blue, you see, there is room. Room for gentle leanings toward green, or purple, or grey; room for the smallest piece of presence or a cascade of inky depth. In blue there is room for the simultaneous advancing and retreat of the colour’s own will and within it the weight of the world. In blue the sky meets the sea and there they come close enough to touch. Blue separates day from night and delineates the earth as a place to stand. In blue there is room for the firmament beneath our feet and “the mind in borrow of the body”.1

The works Stanzie Tooth has created for The Distance of the Moon are embodiments in and of blue. If you think when looking upon these things that this landscape painter’s feet might rest more lightly upon the earth than they once did, you would be right. Based out of Berlin since early 2016, and the beneficiary of numerous recent international residencies including the 2015 Joseph Plaskett Award, Tooth has been playing the part of a painting nomad. As a result, she has evidently thought a great deal about how paint is collected and carried. This may have begun as an issue in practicality, but practicality—like colour—is an excellent breeding ground for intention. Travel has given Stanzie Tooth’s paintings consciousness of the space within their grasp and movement has increased the span of this painter’s arms. Resolute in their blueness and the room it provides, the paintings in The Distance of the Moon are the orbit of earthly and extraterrestrial. Stanzie Tooth’s year of migration has loosened her ties to a practice of landscape painting that grounded itself in knowing and from within it she has gathered to herself the pleasure of the unknown.

The Distance of the Moon is a title shared with a short story by Italo Calvino. In it, the moon and the earth are so close to one another that trips to the lunar surface are made by boat, providing that travellers can accomplish a choreographed leap from sea to sky at just the right moment. The gesture requires a certain grace and a willingness to abandon attachments in pursuit of what the moon could yield. Successful jumpers harvest the richness of the moon’s surface and enjoy an altered perspective on the earth below, but are subject to the complexities inherent in leaving home. The turn in Stanzie Tooth’s new paintings exemplifies the rewards of a well-timed leap. Her works on canvas are subject to a quiet gravitational pull toward solid ground while those in plaster explore new worlds. “This should give you an idea of how the influences of Earth and Moon, practically equal, fought over the space between them,” Calvino writes.2  Stanzie Tooth is traversing the room between them. She is doing it in blue.

Stanzie Tooth is a Canadian artist who works primarily in painting, though her practice also diverges into sculpture, collage and installation. Her recent work illustrates feelings of familiarity and/or alienation from place. Tooth holds a BFA from the Ontario College of Art & Design (2007) and an MFA from the University of Ottawa (2015), where she was awarded an Ontario Graduate Scholarship. Stanzie was the 2015 recipient of the Joseph Plaskett Award for Painting, through which she spent 2016 traveling and creating a new body of work, completing residencies in Berlin and Iceland, as well as self-directed research in Greece and Italy. Her work has been featured in numerous solo and group exhibitions, including solo exhibitions at General Hardware Contemporary, Galerie Karsh Masson and the Howard Park Institute. Tooth currently divides her time between Ontario and Berlin. 

1 William Gass, On Being Blue: A Philosophical Inquiry (Boston: David R. Godine, 1976), 57.

2 Italo Calvino, “The Distance of the Moon” in The Complete Cosmicomics, trans. M.L. McLaughlin, Tim Parks and William Weaver (London and New York: Penguin Classics, 2009), 10.

LAURA TALER, MFA'11, The soft and the pliable will defeat the hard and the strong, Solo exhibition, Gallery 101

Laura Taler
March 4 - April 13, 2017
Saturday March 4, Opening, 2 - 5pm Saturday March 11, Art + Feminism Edit-a-thon, 11am - 4pmSaturday April 1, Artist round table, 2 - 4pm
The desire to fight is really the desire to produce change.  Among many things, the production of change requires patience, repetition, time and, ultimately, a negotiation with loss.   The past is never still, or as Mercedes Sosa sings in La Añera, “Tira el caballo adelante y el alma tira pa’ atrás.”  When you pull the horse forward, the soul pulls (you) back.
Throughout her career Laura Taler has explored the links between movement, memory, and history by using cinematic and choreographic devices to articulate how the body is able to carry the past without being oppressed by it. In this exhibition two video installations and series of collages depict a solitary figure moving through gestures related to the practice and training of different fighting styles.  Bill Coleman performs in The Boxer while Taler practices the movements of Tai Chi in Carry Tiger to the Mountain and Wave Hands Like Clouds.  Shot on 16mm and Super 8 film, these works each question the separation between beginning and ending while proposing that knowledge emerges through the repeated gestures of the body. The slow, the still, and the repetitive – often considered negatively in western notions of progress – become, instead, harbingers of change and openings for transformation.
It is clear that there is more than one fight left. But there is also more than one way to fight.
Carry Tiger to the Mountain and Brush Dust Against the Wind were produced with Maria Angerman, Dagie Brundet, Heather McCrimmon and Dagmar Morath, and with the assistance of Allison Burns, Maura Doyle, Anyse Ducharme, Elena Ducoure, Julia Martin, Kelsey McGregor and numerous other helpers. Laura Taler gratefully acknowledges the support of the Ontario Arts Council and the City of Ottawa. The Boxer is adapted from dancer/choreographer Bill Coleman’s live performance Heartland. The footage of The Boxer was originally part of the documentary HEARTLAND, co-produced with Hammond Associates, with the participation of the Canadian Film and Television Production Fund, Telefilm Canada, the Ontario Arts Council, the Toronto Arts Council, and Bravo!
+ Lao Tzu  | from the Tao Te Ching

Jessica Bell, Seed Work, 2017 (detail) fabric remnant on quilted and stretched muslin, 56 x 72"

Jessica Bell, Seed Work, 2017 (detail)
fabric remnant on quilted and stretched muslin, 56 x 72"

JESSICA BELL, MFA '15: Solo Exhibition, Unit 17

25 February - 16 April 2017
opening reception: Friday, 24 February, 6-8pm

Unit 17 is pleased to present a solo exhibition with recent works by Jessica Bell

These women in my family would seem to have been pragmatic and in their deepest instincts clinically radical, given to breaking clean with everyone and everything they knew. (...) They tended to accommodate any means in pursuit of an uncertain end. They tended to avoid dwelling on just what that end might imply. When they could not think what else to do they moved another thousand miles, set out another garden: beans and squash and sweet peas from seeds carried from the last place. The past could be jettisoned, children buried and parents left behind, but seeds got carried. They were women, these women in my family, without much time for second thoughts, without inclination toward equivocation, and later, when there was time or inclination, there developed a tendency, which I came to see as endemic, toward slight and major derangements, apparently eccentric pronouncements, opaque bewilderment and moves to places not quite on schedule.

[Joan Didion, "Where I Was From" in We Tell Ourselves Stories in Order to Live: The Collected Nonfiction (Alfred A. Knopf: New York, 2006), 955-956.]

Jessica Bell (b.1977, Canada) has twice been a finalist in the RBC Canadian Painting Competition and has exhibited in such venues as the Ottawa Art Gallery, Idea Exchange and the Milwaukee Institute of Art & Design. A recent artist-in-residence at the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art through the generous support of the Canada Council for the Arts, she will present Fits and Starts, a solo exhibition at Ottawa’s Central Art Garage later in 2017. Bell lives in Vancouver. 

17-2414 Main Street
Vancouver, BCV5T 3H9
+1 604 379 8596

Sharon Katz, Unsalted Butter (left), Sharon Katz, Birdhouse (right)

Sharon Katz, Unsalted Butter (left), Sharon Katz, Birdhouse (right)

SHARON KATZ, MFA '14, Time/Frame, Two-person Exhibition, Studio Sixty-Six

FEBRUARY 23 - MARCH 25 2017

opening reception: 
Thursday, February 23, 6-9PM
202-66 Muriel Street, Ottawa, ON  K1S4E1

“Staging in the sense we are talking about is a kind of framing; in theatre, the stage is the frame that allows us to make sense of what is to follow – that the execution wasn’t really an execution, that the newlyweds aren’t really married. While not a part of the performance itself, the frame is what allows us to see it as a performance” (Chris Fleming & John O’Carroll, The Art of the Hoax, 47).

Sharon Katz and Véronique Sunatori, two artists at disparate points in their lives and careers, explore the themes of temporality and materiality through their contrastive but complementary works.

An accomplished animator and filmmaker, Sharon Katz brings her mixed media work incorporating pages of encyclopedias, ink, paint and found objects to the exhibition. Katz’s works depict movement and action, merging the stasis of her painted frames with the vitality in her work, notable in String Theory, where the tennis player yearns to engage below the glass with the ball, finding itself in a “perpetual state of suspended animation.” Katz has only recently begun working with paint and its role in her work varies within each piece - from background to foreground, from heavy touches to light. Also recently designing sets for theatrical production, Katz is cognizant of the ways in which each work becomes a storyboard, a natural extension from animation.

Véronique Sunatori, currently working towards her MFA at York University, creates work that offers alternative perspectives, as can easily be seen in her series of severed and modified frames, effectively reintroducing the “stage” as the art itself, albeit disjointed from its original purpose and appearance. Sunatori also incorporates her identity, born to a Japanese father and Québécoise mother, to her Portraits series, wherein she has drawn over the glass covering photographic portraits of the artist, and her Skillfully series, which references traditional Japanese wood and paper screens. For Sunatori, invoking sculptural forms allows for her work to breathe conceptually and both asks for and offers up alternative points of view.

Staged together in the juxtaposed space of the gallery, the performativity accomplished through the two artists’ works is present, provoking debate on the functionality of staging and framing and, indeed, of a suspension of disbelief.

Text by Rose Ekins, Curator

Fleming, Chris, and John O'Carroll. "The Art of the Hoax." Parallax 16, No. 4 (2010): 45-59.

Andrew Morrow,  Oaring Boughs, Oil on prepared cotton paper, 23 X 30 inches, 2017

Andrew Morrow,  Oaring Boughs, Oil on prepared cotton paper, 23 X 30 inches, 2017

ANDREW MORROW, MFA '09, Ten Small Paintings, Solo Exhibition at Patrick Mikhail Gallery

February 18 – March 25, 2017

PATRICK MIKHAIL GALLERY in Montréal is pleased to present an installation of new works by Québec artist ANDREW MORROW. The exhibition, entitled TEN PAINTINGS SMALL, incorporates new paintings on paper and furthers Morrow’s exploration of a fragmented and expanded language of history painting after Modernism.

Referencing a wide range of history painting and early photography, Morrow’s current paintings present a deconstruction of pictorial strategies from realist painting and narrative histories. Painted as a counterpoint to an ongoing large-scale public art project, TEN PAINTINGS SMALL features ten small oil paintings on paper. In contrast to the incumbencies and constraints associated with public art, these paintings are straightforward and inward-looking, concerned primarily with painterly issues, almost willfully blind to the sociopolitical complexities underlying their source material. Developed from fragments of history painting and 19th century photography, these new works maintain a conscious detachment from originating contexts and meanings, subsuming source materials to formalist painting concerns, such as scale, composition, and space. Additionally, through the reduction of source material to familiar archetypes from history and genre painting—the nude, the worker, the land, the soldier, the artist—figures are apprehended from photographic history and re-assigned to the service of painting. In this exhibition, Morrow re-states the belief that in all things painting, painting comes first.

Morrow’s professional practice is characterized by a desire to both inhabit and extend historical, narrative painting. His work fluctuates between narrative and self-reference, lucidity and indeterminacy, ambition and constraint. Extending from personal, actual, and invented histories, the paintings engage broad, historical themes such as war, eroticism, beauty, the apocalypse, and death, complicating these through a resistance to narrative closure and spatial coherence. In the artist’s work, fragmented and archetypal figures populate shifting, uncertain landscapes—approaching, but never quite attaining, the sublime. Morrow redresses our historical landscape, inviting us to re-evaluate our own cultural self-image.

Morrow holds a BFA from Queen’s University and an MFA from the University of Ottawa where he was awarded the 2009 Michel Goulet Prize for outstanding thesis presentation. He was a finalist in the 2004 RBC Canadian Painting Competition, and the 2007 Toronto Arts Council Emerging Artist Award. He is the recipient of the 2011 RBC Emerging Artist Award.  He was awarded the 2010 W.B. Bruce European Travel Award, the 2013 DAÏMÔN Residency, and the 2015 Can Serrat Residency Support Stipend. Morrow’s work can be found in the collections of the Canada Council Art Bank, City of Ottawa Art Collection, Kingston City Hall, Desjardins Group in Montréal, Herjavec Group in Toronto, and St. Regis Hotel in San Francisco, in addition to numerous private international collections. Morrow has exhibited both nationally and internationally, including solo and group exhibitions at: Art Toronto; Papier Art Fair; Carleton University Art Gallery (Ottawa); Saw Gallery (Ottawa); Mississauga Art Gallery; Sudbury Art Gallery; New Brunswick Museum; Edmonton Art Gallery; Ottawa City Hall Art Gallery, and the Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art (Toronto). Morrow is on the Board of Directors of the Ottawa Arts Council, and is an Adjunct Professor in the Visual Arts Department at the University of Ottawa.  The artist lives and works in Chelsea, Québec.