“Material Tells” Summer Exhibit at the Oakville Galleries

Material Tells 2019 Summer Oakville Galleries Exhibit
“Material Tells” Summer Exhibit at the Oakville Galleries

Oakville Galleries announced the summer exhibition Material Tells. This group show brings together works by Canadian and international artists.

The artists explore the social meanings that arise from artist’s use of familiar materials such as wood, sugar, flowers and cloth.

Taking the politics of making as its point of departure, this group exhibition explores the cultural meanings that emerge from the materials artists use.

Drawing on the writings of poet-philosopher Édouard Glissant, guest curator Daisy Desrosiers assembles a selection of works that engage often-overlooked narratives within cultural histories, and consider the itinerant and opaque legacies that surround certain materials.

Ideas of belonging, memory, witnessing, and domesticity operate throughout the exhibition.

In Ja’Tovia Gary’s film An Ecstatic Experience, for example, the artist marks celluloid film in order to annotate a story of spiritual transcendence as a means to escape oppression and slavery.

The miniature wooden shack sculptures of Beverly Buchanan—made by the artist between the late 1970s and 2015—are similarly embodied with notions of endurance, recovery and care.

Alvaro Barrington’s paintings evoke personal memories and collective cultural histories through the formal qualities of sewing

Jesse Chun uses language as a medium for her work. By manipulating ESL learning methods, Chun defamiliarizes today’s most common lingua franca, fracturing and distorting what we expect to read, see, and hear.

Also interested in language and translation is Marie-Michelle Deschamps. She investigates the properties of vitreous enamel, an ancient technique that is both delicate and durable, and here resembles white sheets of paper filled with potential meaning.

Each of the artists in Material Tells suggests a fluid and nuanced understanding of how objects and images come to be, reflecting on the process by which artworks—and identities—are assembled, dis-assembled and transformed.

Material Tells Artists:

  1. Alvaro Barrington
  2. Kevin Beasley
  3. Shannon Bool
  4. Beverly Buchanan
  5. Jesse Chun
  6. Marie-Michelle Deschamps
  7. Azza El Siddique
  8. Ja’Tovia Gary
  9. Felix Gonzalez-Torres
  10. Iris Häussler
  11. Kapwani Kiwanga

Material Tells exhibit runs until September 8th at both the Oakville Galleries at Gairloch Gardens and Centennial Square.

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