“PAUSE” at the Snelgrove Gallery

The students that are part of Marcus Miller’s Exhibition Technique class have taken over the Snelgrove this week in an interesting exhibit titled PAUSE.

Based around the notion that the modern white cube gallery is a void zone that is separate from time, place, and the outside world. Inside the gallery participants have a chance to pause: to step back from busy life, slow down, and reflect. By taking a pause, people often feel invigorated, gain fresh perspectives and notice little details that they’d usually miss. The Snelgrove Gallery’s press release introduces the show eloquently:

Gordon Snelgrove closed his eyes for a moment…

THE WORLD OUTSIDE IS CHAOS.
IT’S FOCUSED ON SPEED AND ACCOMPLISHMENTS. ANY PLACE
CAN BECOME A PLACE OF PAUSE. A PLACE WHERE TIME SLOWS
DOWN AND EVERYDAY EXISTENCE BECOMES UNCANNY. A
PAUSE IS A TEMPORARY STOP: A PERIOD OF TIME IN WHICH
SOMETHING IS STOPPED BEFORE IT IS STARTED AGAIN. IT’S A
TEMPORARY INACTION, ESPECIALLY AS CAUSED BY
UNCERTAINTY. STEP AWAY, PULL BACK – IT CAN BE UNDONE;
THE ACTION CAN RESUME AT ANY MOMENT. IT DEPENDS ON
WHEN AND WHERE IT’S USED. I LIKE USING IT AS A REST
(BECAUSE I AM JUST LIKE THAT). DO NOTHING – NO
INTERACTIONS, DOING ABSOLUTELY NOTHING, JUST BEING. IT
IS THE WHITE SPACES IN BETWEEN THAT ABSORB OUR MESSY
LIVES AND LEAVE US CLEAN. IT’S THE BANAL, THE OBVIOUS,
THE COMMON, THE ORDINARY, THE HABITUAL, BACKGROUND
NOISE. IT TAKES THE SPACE OF A BEAT, BUT NO NEW ACTION
HAPPENS, LIKE “MA” OR EMPTINESS, WHICH IS USED TO TAKE A
BREAK FROM THE CONSTANT ACTION AND TENSION OF A
STORY AND ALLOW IT TO BREATHE. PAUSE MEANS TAKING A
MOMENT TO STOP AND LOOK BACK TO HOW OUR ANCESTORS
WENT ABOUT THEIR DAILY LIVES.

The Pause show was influenced by a class intervention/performance of a slow walk through the grass bowl on campus. The university walkways are usually a rushed place of hurried speed-walking. The students that spent 40 minutes slow motion walking 200m through the bowl stuck out against this busy background. People paused, some stopped and watched. There were a lot of people confused at the scene of 20 plus people slo-mo walking that they filmed it and flagged down others to talk about it. The slow walk was a disturbance to the busy university setting.

The students that were part of the slow motion walk felt a strange calming peace as it became a meditation-like activity. They felt separated from the general activity of the university grounds. As they were slow motion walking through the bowl it was easy to notice little things around you like the activity of birds, distant construction sounds, the hum of college drive traffic, the feel of grass underneath a prolonged step and the gentle breeze. But the participants also noticed more internally: the beating of the heart and the rhythm of the breath.

From this activity the PAUSE gallery show was born. The class wanted to bring the experience of the slow-motion walk into the Snelgrove Gallery. The Snelgrove looks different than usual with most art pieces looking for the viewer to become a participant so that people become part of the PAUSE experience.

Here is a few of the works found in the gallery:

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^ The slow motion walk was re-created and filmed. Here it is shown in two formats: normal speed and increased speed. The normal speed shows the class in slow motion walking with everyday life going on around them. In the increased speed version it appears as if the class is walking normal speed while life around them is whizzing around them like swarm of bees.

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^There are a few things in this photo:
-The geometric sculptures are meditation helmets with small holes cut into them that distort light and sound. There is a projected patterned light sequence aimed at the helmets.

-A typical gallery is concerned with the four walls. Pause has recaptured planes that are usually unused and unnoticed. Thread and geometric structures are on the ceiling and creeping down the walls, while bubble wrap is covering the floor making you aware of every step that you (and others) take.

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^here is a visual of deconstructed slow motion steps.

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^FoundSound booth is a place to sit and listen closely to a soundscape while being bathed in ambient lighting. What you hear is a strange yet familiar journey that is made of isolated and layered sounds recorded (or found) while walking around the university area. You are encouraged to allow your brain to mentally create the environment of what your are hearing.

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^ There is also an isolation booth that has been soundproofed and light proofed (to a degree). It’s a good place to disconnect from the world and reconnect with yourself. Most people can only handle a few minutes with themselves in here, why is that?

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^The Stethoscope Pause performance is a participatory performance where people are connected together via stethoscopes. The participants listen to each others’ heartbeat and breathing as they regulate and relax together.

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^ Part of the exhibit is also located outside of the gallery. There is a wooden viewing chamber that silences distractions to focus closely on a patch of sky. You might see that sky differently than before.

This exhibit is up until Nov.29th, with the exhibition Friday 7-10.
So why don’t you PAUSE and check out the Snelgrove!

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“Fine Print” at SCYAP

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The U of S 1st and 2nd year printmaking class had an exhibit called Fine Print at SCYAP that ended last week and let me say: there is some talent emerging in the printmaking program. Most of the prints that I liked were etchings with some creative use of chine colle, but there were also some fine woodcuts.

The only thing that the show lacked was title cards to know who the artist of each piece was (I’m not too good at deciphering handwritten signatures).

Here’s a peak at some of the art:

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(^ a first year’s woodcut!!)

It’s good to see fresh Printmaking in Saskatoon

Tonya Hart’s “INFRA” sculptures stolen/damaged

It’s a sad day in Saskatoon as we heard news that, the latest of Saskatoon’s Placemaker Public Art Program’s, Tonya Hart’s INFRA sculptures have been vandalized and one has been stolen. It’s a shame because these things are pretty cool. They are a pack of wolves made of fiberglass that light up at night. Their orange, yellow and cooler shades mimic thermal optics and are powered by a nearby solar panel. Just like wildlife is being pushed out of environments due to human encroachment, will our public art also be?

It’s truly sad that this happened, since I believe that public art is crucial to a healthy society. Art brings beauty to our lives but is also provoking. Art makes you think and feel. Let’s hope that this doesn’t reflect poorly on our city, and negatively effect future visiting works of art.

If you or anyone knows anything about this crime please contact crime stoppers.

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“Infra” wolves amongst the foliage along College Drive ^

ImageTwo Infra Wolf-cubs lit up at night. ^

 

 

 

INK JOB

The senior level printmaking class has taken over the Snelgrove Gallery with their show “Ink Job”

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There’s a lot of different mediums being represented, with each student bringing a different take to the medium they use.  There’s silkscreens, etchings, photo-etchings, lithography, photo-litho, collagraph, woodcuts, linocuts, chine colle  and three varieties of monotypes. Despite all the variety the show looks good together.

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These gallery shots don’t do the show justice
Most of the works require a closer look.
So why don’t you check them out tomorrow, Friday 8th, at the closing reception from 7-9pm at the Snelgrove Gallery.
There will be food, beverages, and good people!

Darren McQuay’s MFA “Dwell”

Darren McQuay’s impressive MFA show “Dwell” just finished at the Gordon Snelgrove Gallery on campus.

In lieu of an artist statement Darren used a quote that really worked:

We have dreamt the world. We dreamt it as firm, mysterious, visible, ubiquous in space and durable in time; but in its architecture we have allowed tenuous and eternal crevices of unreason which tell us it is false.

Jorges Luis Borges Labyrinths

Darren’s work feels like the architecture inside of your head during a dream. There is a feeling of impermanence as the structures and framework move in and out of existence, defying logic. His paintings had a depth of layering, that played forward and back. He kept charcoal sketches and lines to suggest you are not only looking at  a passed but continuing process of creation. The palette was mostly organic neutrals but with splashes of color. Looking into his paintings the viewer is given interesting multiple perspectives, giving the feeling that you are looking around his dream world, floating. There was a dichotomous balance happening of raw energy and zen calm. Each of his paintings looked great, but looked amazing together as a whole. My opinion, his most successful work his massive diptychs that were similar but different and performed a “ying and yang”  next to each other.

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^contingency
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^dependent origination I
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^Dependent Origination II

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^mindful interior

Darren McQuay’s show was one of the better MFA exhibits I’ve seen in the last few years.
If you are interested in dreams, architecture, psychology and eastern philosophy, or you really liked the dream engineering of Inception make sure you check out Darren McQuay’s art.

 

Happy Halloween -Vampire Beat!

Or Should I say Happy Halloweek??
There’s been loads of Halloween celebrations over the last week but Vampire Beat takes the cake!
If you are unaware of Vampire Beat let me give you the rundown. BlackFlash Art Magazine and Paved Arts Artist Center team up every year to throw one hell of a video dance party. This year was no exception…and they got the University Art Kids, VASU, to decorate. Booyakasha!

Vampire Beat does more for a Halloween party than the 3 D’s (DJ’s, dancing and drinking)

They had a damn good photo booth
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(^VASU members doin’ their thang)
*for more photo booth photos check out https://www.facebook.com/patty.paved/media_set?set=a.599307126792578&type=1

There was a green screen stage that projected you and your friends in front of creepy old horror movies

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They had a GIF creator booth to make you and your friends into the next Keyboard Cats!

http://www.sweetgif.com/vampirebeat/pm-1N8J.html

(for the GIF gallery go to http://www.sweetgif.com/vampirebeat/gallery/1/)

Saskatoon’s own R̶o̶n̶ ̶B̶e̶r̶g̶u̶n̶d̶y̶  errrr Jeff Rogstad knows what’s up

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DJzzz and Lazerz

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Spring Breeaaaak!

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Catwoman and Frida

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^Miley Cyrus Demon Twerker! (and Savage Teddy Bear Entourage)

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“Spooky Docta Jones!”

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^terrible photo of some awesome costumes!

If you were/weren’t there make sure to check Vampire Beat Next Year !