Chris and the cats.
On Wednesday evening I went to The Montreal Museum of Fine Art to see the exhibit "Expanding Horizons: Painting and Photography of American and Canadian Landscape 1860-1918". If you want to see some original prints from this time including the work of Notman, O'Sullivan, Stieglitz and Curtis, then this is the show for you. I am always amazed by the incredible detail and tonal range that these photographers were able to get so early on in the history of photography, and therefore seeing the prints in person is quite spectacular. Of course it is also surprising how small prints were made at that time, especially if you, like me are so used to seeing contemporary work that is most often printed very large. The show intersperses photographs and paintings, and the relationship between the two as well as how one medium affected the other is quite interesting. I think I will have to go back for a second visit in order to absorb it all.
Thursday, July 30, 2009
Chris and the cats.
Monday, July 27, 2009
Friday, July 24, 2009
Chris taking a nap.
On Thursday I was in the Old Port area of Montreal so I went by DHC /ART and saw a show that I had been highly anticipating: Michal Rovner's "Particles of Reality". DHC is a relatively young Montreal foundation and exhibition space that first opened its doors almost two years ago. Since then they have shown the work of Sophie Calle and Christian Marclay, among others. I had heard great things about the Rovner show but I was unfamiliar with her work. I was wonderfully surprised! Her videos and projections of large groups of people, performing choreographed movements, and shot from a great distance, are humbling to all. I remember the moment when I was a child and I realized that to an ant I was a giant, and that to me their world seemed insignificant. At the time I wondered if perhaps there was a giant watching me and for whom my world seemed equally insignificant. Rovner's work brings this idea home. Watching the tiny figures doing their dance at times reassured me that our individual actions are of no consequence to the wider world, or otherwise depressed me through the realization that our individual actions are of no consequence to the wider world. If the elaborate gestures of an individual are lost in Rovner's work, the group's significance is felt. The tiny figures seem to have a plan and follow a pattern, creating complex shapes that are constantly in flux. Some of those patterns are familiar and frightening ones. The long lines of people walking one behind the other reminded me of the many forced migrations that have been used to repress different groups throughout the world's history (the Jews in WWII, The Trail of Tears in the US, The Khmer Rouge in Cambodia, etc.). The show is divided between DHC’s two spaces and in the venue across the street the work shown is much larger and often surrounds the viewer. I must admit that I couldn’t stay long in these rooms, the groups of people performing similar movements was so overpowering and sad. All in all a really interesting show that I recommend seeing.
On Friday I went to see old friend and f/start co-founder, Guillaume Simoneau’s work at Armatta as well as Kim Waldron’s work next door at Occurrence. Both very good photo shows. Lots of good art seen this week!
Wednesday, July 22, 2009
Monday, July 20, 2009
I came across this set of little flags on Mont Royal. I don't know what they are for. I imagine that they are messages to the gardeners but perhaps they are an intervention of their own. Either way I am fascinated and I thoroughly enjoyed their presence.
Thursday, July 16, 2009
Tuesday, July 14, 2009
A few weeks ago a friend sent me this link to the work of Francisco Infante-Arana & Nonna Gorunova. It stayed with me and now I keep going back to it. Made over thirty years ago, it seems so contemporary and fresh. Simple tools with such powerful results. Take a look, I'm sure you'll enjoy it. (Although I must say that I'm not such a fan of the people dressed up as stars, but don't let that stop you from scrolling down)