Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Heavy as a Feather @ Stewart Hall

A captivating exhibition of sculpture is on view at Pointe Claire's Stewart Hall until August 30, 2015.

Chaise Roulante, Jannick Deslauriers
crinoline, lace, organza and thread

Artists Jannick Deslauriers, Kristina Lahde, Cal Lane and Clint Neufeld "destabilize the materiality of traditionally functional objects and uncover their renewed beauty".

Deslauriers works in organza and stitch, using delicate cloth to represent objects that in actuality are made from solid materials like metal and stone.

The fragile and ethereal 3-D objects assume their shapes by hanging from the ceiling, suspended by barely visible monofilament threads.

I was especially taken by Deslaurier's Chaise Roulante, shown at left. The vulnerability of the human body was somehow implied by the fragility of the chair's construction.

Disparition, Jannick Deslauriers
crinoline, organza and thread

Writes curator Manel Benchabane, these are "sculptural representations of known objects, [voided] of their core skeleton, [made] more transparent and delicate. Suspended, these sculptures take on a ghostly and magical air."

The showpiece of the exhibition was Deslauriers' Disparition, a replica of a church measuring perhaps 10 feet in length. Again, it assumed its full dimension by being hung by many fine threads.

Is the title (in English: disappearance) a commentary on the diminishing role of the Church in Quebec society?

Untitled, Cal Lane
plasma-cut wheelbarrow

Cal Lane had several pieces on display, all made of metal that had somehow been perforated into a delicate filigree. What began as common functional objects (shovels, oil drums, hoods of trucks) were rendered into decorative traceries, bringing to mind dualities of opacity and transparency, masculinity and femininity.

Pantie Can, Cal Lane

Items like metal ammunition boxes with an inherent air of menace were gelded into examples of sweet sentimentality.

What may have once been a container for turpentine is transformed into something resembling lacy lingerie.

Hive, Kristiina Lahde,
phone books

Kristiina Lahde's pieces were made of re-purposed paper that had been perforated, cut, or manipulated in novel ways.

Hive, detail, Kristiina Lahde,
phone books

"Confronted with these sculptures laced with contradictions, objects lose their function,but gain a new delicacy."

A thought-provoking exhibition that will intrigue with the unexpected.

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