Gallery on Queen welcomes new work by Amy Ash, Chantal Khoury and Maja Padrov beginning July 12.
Amy Ash, Chantal Khoury and Maja Padrov each carry out their artistic practices with contrasting approaches, yet the work of all three women evoke ideas of duality, concealment and hidden meanings. This group exhibition is a selection of their latest work.
This ongoing body of work uses the language of experimental chemistry and mechanics to comment on the ways in which we construct memory and belonging. In combination with gestural imagery of bodies at work and in motion, Alchemy and Actuatorsexplores copper as a conductor of meaning, both as a shape-memory alloy and a component of the human biological make-up.
The imagery is borrowed from local archives of factory workers, dancers and participants in educational settings, including documentation from my own workshops, in order to capture instances where a sense of community, as well as muscle memory and bodily learning are engaged.
Alchemy and Actuators, experiments with chemistry to produce copper sulphate crystals within my paint andink pigments. The crystals, like memories harboured, shift, mutate and grow on the surface of the work in subtle ways long after the image is created.
This selected body of work belongs in part to my latest series, Home and Haven (2017), and furthermore presents a period of transition within my practice. My subject matter examines my relationship to Canada and my own intersecting identities. Home and Haven (2017), explores site-specific areas from my childhood in the Maritimes through an idyllic lens. It was motivated by my upbringing in suburban and rural settings, and has manifested into a series of paintings and drawings that are dominated by selective memory. Informed by New Brunswick tourism catalogues and family photos, this rigorous exploration into ‘longing’ and ‘belonging’ is a narrative that speaks as both a ‘tourist’ and a ‘resident’. Home and Haven has triggered a new thematic direction in tracing the trajectory of my family lineage as well as the land I was born in.
My recent work is about exploring sculptural possibilities of functional pottery. I use the basic language of thrown forms to create composite structures and elements that are related to each other. I often change the method of making, proportions and appearance of elements, so the function, if it exists, is not always obvious. Placement and interplay of parts of the complex forms, affect both function and aesthetic, and I like to arrange them in a ludic, illogical manner. An important aspect of my work is research in glaze chemistry. I wanted to combine in each piece the robust appearance of a large vessel that is a canvas for dramatic glaze effects, with addition of miniature and precise details, reduced to a few repeating geometric elements. The limits of those basic symbols combined with the vernacular of utilitarian forms, provide guidance to my exploration of familiar domestic object pushed to elaborate and eccentric results.
Be/longing – a group exhibition | July 12-31 | Gallery on Queen | 406 Queen Street | Fredericton