Opening and Curator’s Talk: Sunday, May 29 from 1-3pm
This exhibition presents the work of contemporary artists Lucie Chan and Jérôme Havre whose practices employ immersive multi-media installations to explore the transient nature of human connections, communities and territories in an era of cosmopolitanism.
Cosmopolitanism is the view that all human beings are world citizens with responsibilities that extend beyond national borders and imposed borders. Both artists address liminality and space (both psychological and physical) through visual and spatial play bringing to light relationships between people environments, particularly within situations of social transformation. The liminal, which is defined as a space of the “in-between” defies categorization and allows for the exploration of states of being between past and future identities and further into notions of transculturalism and cultural fluidity.
Lucie Chan assembles multi-figure ink, watercolour and pencil drawings with digital prints and animated video to create composite structures that suggest suspended states of being. Informed by in-depth interviews and conversations with individuals from diverse immigrant communities in various cities, Chan uses portraiture as a trace, a record of the encounters, revealing stories that touch on and make evident the nature of shape-shifting identities in a globalized world. As each narrational position combines and recombines with others, the viewer is empowered to read different relationships between and through the layers. Her drawn environments have less to do with representation and more to do with collectivity through a merging of hers and other people’s stories of loss, belonging and adaption.
Jérôme Havre’s creative process combines photography, drawing and textile-based works to explore questions of nationalism and nature, reflecting on themes of identity and the politics of location. Interested in incidental or optical forms, structures and spaces, this new installation created specifically for this exhibition space, investigates notion of the subliminal and how this phenomena can cause profound shifts in perception through multiple points of entry. In work that makes use of various sensorial stimuli, motion, projections, shadows, and reflections, Havre brings to light relationships between the body, representation and “otherness” challenging the ways in which we perceive our surroundings through the breaking of thresholds.
The artists’ works in Liminal propose an investigation of the changing notions of selfhood and challenge the way our identities are forged through these alterations related to mind and body, conscious and unconscious. Together they create a space of ambivalence, working to displace the fixity of meaning and structures of power and knowledge. These are creative environments that ultimately direct viewers towards spaces of contemplation allowing us to face, question and experience the challenges that arises from an acute sense of otherness and difference, in order to find new ways of speaking to aspects of humanity and cultural representation, even when those meanings remain elusive and fleeting.
Read the catalogue!
Lucie Chan holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts with distinction from the Alberta College of Art and a Master of Fine Arts from Nova Scotia College of Art and Design with a specialization in drawing. She has shown nationally and internationally in various group and solo exhibitions and has been an artist–in-residence in places such as ARTerra in Lobão da Beira, Portugal; the Ross Creek Center for the Arts in Canning, Nova Scotia; Banff Centre for the Arts in Banff, Alberta; Museum London in London, Ontario; the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia in Halifax and Richmond Art Gallery in Richmond, British Columbia. She has been the recipient of numerous provincial and national grants including being long-listed twice for the Sobey Art Award (2005, 2010). Chan currently lives and works in Vancouver where she teaches at Emily Carr University of Art and Design.
Jérôme Havre completed his studies at the École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts in Paris. He was awarded three scholarships that enabled him to pursue different art practices: silk printing techniques in New York (Cooper Union), printing techniques in Barcelona (Bellas Artes) and painting and video in Berlin (Universität der Künste Berlin – HDK). He has exhibited his works in Europe, Africa and North America, including at the Textile Museum of Canada, Toronto and the Contemporary Art Gallery, Vancouver. Havre has been awarded several grants from the Canada Council for the Arts, Quebec Arts Council, Ontario Arts Council, Toronto Arts Council and in 2010 was long-listed for the Sobey Art Award. He recently completed an Artist in Residence Program at the Art Gallery of Ontario and currently resides in Toronto. Havre currently resides in Toronto.