Upcoming Exhibitions

Claire Cunningham in Give Me a Reason to Live

carrie allison: wâhkôhtowin 

7 June to 14 August 2019

Vernissage: 7 June 2019, 7:30 pm

Curated by Emily Falvey

wâhkôhtowin is the Cree word for “kinship” or “the way in which we relate to each other.” For artist Carrie Allison, this concept serves as an artistic methodology and guiding principle. Heart River (2018), a beaded map of the Heart River, which runs through the artist’s Cree and Métis family territory, underscores essential relationships between traditional beading, water, and the land. The companion installation Connect/Contact (2017), uses flora harvested from the banks of the river to create a gathering of paper discs whose movements invite visitors to listen for what Carmen Robertson calls “the sounds of the watery embodiment of place.” Finally, Beaded Botanicals (2018-2019) features beaded sketches of endangered flora found in Mi'kma'ki, the territory in which Allison currently resides, presented alongside botany specimens borrowed from the Herbarium of the Nova Scotia Museum.

Carrie Allison is an Indigenous, mixed-ancestry visual artist born and raised on unceded and unsurrendered Coast Salish Territory (Vancouver, BC), with roots in High Prairie, Alberta. Situated in K'jipuktuk since 2010, Allison’s practice responds to her maternal Cree and Métis ancestry, thinking through intergenerational cultural loss and acts of reclaiming, resilience, resistance, and activism, as well as notions of allyship, kinship, and visiting. Her work is rooted in research and pedagogical discourses and seeks to reclaim, remember, recreate, and celebrate her ancestry through visual discussions. She looks to Indigenous, mixed-race, antiracist, anti-oppressive, feminist, and environmental theorists to critically examine the world around her. Allison holds an MFA, a BFA, and a BA in Art History from NSCAD University

The exhibition is accompanied by an Occasional Paper featuring an essay by Carmen Robertson, Canada Research Chair in North American Art and Material Culture at Carleton University.

Image: Carrie Allison, Beaded Botanical 3 (sabatia kennedyana fern.), 2018, toho beads on linen, courtesy of the artist. Photo: Séamus Gallagher


Claire Cunningham in Give Me a Reason to Live

Claire Cunningham in Give Me a Reason to Live

Claire Cunningham in Give Me a Reason to Live

An Elsewhere Forever Present Alisa Arsenault, Maryse Arseneault, Rémi Belliveau, Herménégilde Chiasson  

7 June to 25 August 2019
Vernissage: 7 June 2019 at 7:30 pm

Curated by Emily Falvey

The point of departure for this exhibition is Fourteen Stations for Oswald (1990), a series of evocative drawings by Herménégilde Chiasson found in the permanent collection of the Owens Art Gallery. In 1990, Gérald LeBlanc wrote a poetic essay about this work that concluded, “Herménégilde Chiasson proposes/sensible dreams/of an elsewhere forever present.” Moving out from this idea, the exhibition explores the ways in which historical, popular, and familial stories intersect in the work of four Acadian artists. While the question of identity is clearly present in these works, it is not rigidly defined or reduced to simple nationalist stereotypes. Of equal importance is the notion of repetition as an aesthetic gesture and its relationship to time and memory.

The exhibition is accompanied by an Occasional Paper featuring an essay by writer and independent curator Elise Anne LaPlante.

This exhibition was organized in conjunction with the Congrès acadien mondial 2019.

Image: Herménégilde Chiasson, Fourteen Stations for Oswald, 1. The Condemnation, 1990, graphite, pastel, and oil stick on Vinci paper, Collection of Owens Art Gallery. Photo: Roger Smith.


Un ailleurs toujours présent Alisa Arsenault, Maryse Arseneault, Rémi Belliveau, Herménégilde Chiasson  

Du 7 juin au 25 août 2019
Vernissage : 7 juin à 19 h 30

Organisée par Emily Falvey

L’œuvre Quatorze stations pour Oswald (1990), une série de dessins évocateurs de l’artiste Herménégilde Chiasson faisant partie de la collection permanente de la Galerie Owens, est le point de départ de cette exposition. En 1990, Gérald LeBlanc rédige un essai poétique portant sur cette œuvre, qui se terminait sur ces lignes : « Herménégilde Chiasson me propose/des écrans sensibles/d’un ailleurs toujours présent. » S’appuyant sur cette idée originelle, l’exposition met en évidence comment s’entrecroisent les narrations historique, populaire et familiale dans les œuvres de quatre artistes acadiens, acadiennes. Bien que la question identitaire soit très présente dans ces œuvres, elle n’est pas étroitement circonscrite ni réduite à des stéréotypes nationalistes simplistes. D’une importance tout aussi grande est la notion de répétition comme geste esthétique et son rapport avec le temps et la mémoire.

L’exposition s’accompagne d’une Publication occasionnelle comportant un texte de l’autrice et commissaire indépendante Elise Anne LaPlante.

Cette exposition est organisée dans le cadre du Congrès mondial acadien 2019.

Image : Herménégilde Chiasson, Quatorze stations pour Oswald, 1. La condamnation, 1990, mine de plomb, pastel et bâtonnet à l’huile sur papier Vinci, collection de l’Owens Art Gallery. Photo : Roger Smith.


Claire Cunningham in Give Me a Reason to LiveStill from Diane Borsato's video Gems and Minerals












Automatisme Ambulatoire: Hysteria, Imitation, Performance

6 September to 6 November 2019

Curated by Amanda Cachia

Automatisme Ambulatoire, or ambulatory automatism, is an expression that conjures notions of the compulsive traveler, while simultaneously implying irresistible urges and movements such as grimaces, tics, and gestures that form relationships with corporeal pathologies. This term inspires the title and theme of the exhibition Automatisme Ambulatoire: Hysteria, Imitation, Performance, which includes six new works focused on performance, choreography and installation.

The six artists in this project have been invited to consider ideas of “automatisme ambulatoire,” “hysteria” and “epilepsy” as a performance style, and to consider how these gestures can work to subvert, undo, transform and reimagine the body and language, both real and imagined. Through diverse and established choreographic practice, which always already embrace hybrid, performance-based gesture, these artists aim to question, challenge, and complicate the ethical and moral boundaries of “imitation,” and how the so-called “pathologized” body might be considered under new social and cultural contemporary contexts. Through their work, they demonstrate and so chart an evolution of the moving corpus since modern times. It is especially through the performance and portrayal of queer, disabled, and gendered subjects that the ambulatory hysteric will and can be reclaimed, rethought, and revitalized within a social justice context.

Artists: Diane Borsato, Pauline Boudry & Renate Lorenz, Claire Cunningham, the collective My Barbarian (Malik Gaines, Jade Gordon and Alexandro Segade), Brendan Fernandes, and Every Ocean Hughes.

Images: Claire Cunningham in Give Me A Reason to Live, photo by Hugo Glendinning; and Diane Borsato, Gems and Minerals, Video still, 25 mins, 2018, photo courtesy of the artist.

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