The RMG

Skip to main content

Jenna Faye Powell: Blue Monday

Jenna Faye Powell, Expansion Potential (detail), 2016

Blue Monday

June 22, 2017 - July 16, 2017

Reception: July 7, 7-10pm
Artist Talk: July 8, 1-3pm.

Blue Monday is a project materially and conceptually influenced by pseudo-scientific theories of the most dismal and melancholic day of the year.

Blue Monday falls on every third Monday in January, and since 2005 it has arbitrarily marked the Western World’s most miserable 24 hours. Blue Monday isn’t rooted in astronomical or even astrological science. It was derived from an arbitrary formula created by an American psychologist for SkyTravel, a travel agency-cum-infomercial channel. SkyTravel’s equation was designed to determine when North Americans were most likely to travel abroad or indulge in retail therapy to combat their winter woes. The psychologist behind Blue Monday has since stated that the equation is meaningless and created for obvious capitalistic pursuits.

Yet, as to be expected, Blue Monday has become a self-fulfilling prophecy. Further, it is criticized for trivializing genuine conversations regarding mental health and well-being. Fast-food therapy. Five ways shopping is actually good for you.

Blue Monday will approach this narrative with a sense of naive-sincerity, encouraging criticism to take the form of poetic humour: a gentle-jab at the subject enabling an opening, an edge, an entrance to discuss color, fiction, departures, sanctuary and mental health.

Jenna Faye Powell is an emerging artist and arts administrator. Powell has attained a MFA degree from the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design University, as well as a BFA degree from the University of Western Ontario. Powell has participated in various solo and group shows including Brave New Worlds at Museum London, the Windsor- Essex Triennial at the Art Gallery of Windsor and the 2012 RBC Painting Competition at the Power Plant Gallery. Powell practices and resides London, Ontario, working as the Gallery Director of the Forest City Gallery.