Thursday, July 10, 2008
Painting: Thick and Thin Post Number Four
Who can wait until tommorrow, when there's such good stuff in my inbox today(especially after the FFWD review)? The next round of questions, answered by Kim Neudorf(who made my father's favourite paintings in the exhibition). I'll add the other artists as they weigh in on the same questions.
WM: How do you feel about the implications of a regional style that this exhibition carries with it?
KN: My thought is that this exhibition includes artists who for one reason or another, happened to have lived in Calgary and have been found here, like traces. Other layers of meaning will happen when the exhibition is seen in person, adding to any expectations of “regional” and altering long-distance or drive-by experiences of the work.
WM: Does the naming of a community (or art team) serve anyone beyond the person who named it?
KN: A group name can be one way of creating a means to be more visible, for the group and for the namer, and for the public to access the work. I like temporary names that expire or become wizened, or have split-personalities.
WM: How do you feel about my position as outsider to the city I am speaking about?
KN: The circumstance that artists from Calgary, or Canadian artists in general, often no longer live and work where they’re from - this seems very normal and practical now. Though as someone who hasn't lived here for years, you may be able to see things that the Calgary-based artists can be too close to.
WM: Who benefits from an exhibition like this tracking a geographic community or style? How do the viewers benefit? The community beyond the artists and curator?
KN: If there is a tracking of a geographic community or style, I like the idea that “geographic” can also include mediated and metaphoric spaces, like the spaces in-between, described in that great book about Canadian photography – "Faking Death: Canadian Art Photography And The Canadian Imagination". Maybe the point can be about reminding viewers about what is already mediated, such as clichés and conventions about what is “geographic style”.
Ryan Sluggett (answering on the general themes presented in this round of questions):
I did recieve a specific grounding in painting from Chris Cran in
perceptual painting, and in perspective from Eric Cameron. So yes, I
have been formally trained in a regional tradition. I find that a lot
of artists assume that they are homeless these days, ignoring what is
going on in their own backyard by always thinking internationally. But
keeping yourself locked away in your studio without a context for
your work in presents other, perhaps more critical, difficulties. It's
a balancing act. I just hope that art in general will get a little
less international looking. It has a flattening effect aesthetically
I wonder, is Morandi a regional artist?
*Photo by Ashley Bilodeau