The Poetics of Space



The Poetics of Space

October 26, 2018 – January 6, 2019
Opening October 25, 7 pm
Maxwell Bates, Rebecca Belmore, B.C. Binning, Lee Bontecou, Bertram Brooker, Karin Bubaš, Arabella Campbell, Emily Carr, Share Corsaut, Christos Dikeakos, Michael Drebert, Lawren Harris, Owen Kydd, Beatrice Lennie, Landon Mackenzie, Myfanwy MacLeod, Jason McLean, Alex Morrison, Ben Nicholson, James Nizam, Dennis A. Oppenheim, Annie Pootoogook, Pudlo Pudlat, Kyohei Sakaguchi, William Vazan
The Poetics of Space is a touring exhibition from the Vancouver Art Gallery that features historical and contemporary artworks that explore the idea of space from a wide range of perspectives. The exhibition’s title comes from Gaston Bachelard’s 1958 book of the same name that presents an experiential understanding of home and personal environments. In the book Bachelard discusses the way our perceptions of shelter influence the very essence of how we think and imagine. The exhibition is divided into three sections, and features works by twenty-five artists that together contemplate space – through optical perceptions, experiences of the domestic, and the experimental mapping of broader terrain.
The first section, “Fracturing of Form” grounds the exhibition historically, highlighting works from the early to mid 20th century that rethink and ‘fracture’ linear perspective as a tool to understand space on a two-dimensional plane. This section features works by celebrated Canadian painters Emily Carr and Lawren Harris, alongside pieces by outstanding, yet lesser known, artists like Beatrice Lennie and Maxwell Bates.
The following area, “Psychic Weight of the Domestic,” focuses on the intimacy of inhabited structures or other familiar locations to reveal how they are laden with emotional intensity and symbolic meaning. A third section, “Mapping of Space” features works in which artists have defined sites in non-traditional ways, mapping according to their own purposes, or acknowledging its layered socio-cultural histories. Ultimately, the exhibition reveals the expansive and subjective ways in which artists have grappled with depicting and defining space over time. The works included in The Poetics of Space are primarily drawn from the Vancouver Art Gallery’s permanent collection.
Speaking through shared experiences and understandings of the environments that surround us, The Poetics of Space is the fourth exhibition in a year in which Nanaimo Art Gallery asks the question: how can we speak differently? In Hul’q’umi’num, the language of the Snuneymuxw people: scekwul yuxw ‘alu kws nec’s tu sqwal ct
The Poetics of Space is organized and circulated by the Vancouver Art Gallery and curated by Daina Augaitis, Chief Curator Emerita and Emmy Lee Wall, Assistant Curator, Vancouver Art Gallery. This exhibition is part of the Across the Province touring program, which is generously supported by the Killy Foundation.
Image above: Myfanwy MacLeod, Ajar, 2005, chromogenic print, 121.3 x 121.3 cm, Collection of the Vancouver Art Gallery, Gift of the Artist
Image front page slideshow: Annie Pootoogook, Listening to the Radio, 2005–06, pencil crayon, ink on paper, 41.6 x 51.0 cm, Collection of the Vancouver Art Gallery, Gift of Claudia Beck and Andrew Gruft, Photo: Trevor Mills, Vancouver Art Gallery
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Circles for Eli 1 - Copy

Artist Talk with Landon Mackenzie

November 3rd, 2018 1-2 pm 
Shaw Auditorium at the Vancouver Island Conference Centre
101 Gordon Street, Nanaimo
As part of The Poetics of Space, we are proud to present a special afternoon lecture with celebrated Vancouver-based painter Landon Mackenzie. Please join us to learn more about her work and process. 
Landon Mackenzie’s paintings have been widely exhibited in Canada and internationally and collected by museums including the National Gallery of Canada, Vancouver Art Gallery, Art Gallery of Ontario, and Montreal Museum of Fine Arts. Recent shows include Emily Carr and Landon Mackenzie; The Wood Chopper and the Monkey at the Vancouver Art Gallery, and Landon Mackenzie; Parallel Journey, Works on Paper (1975-2015) a retrospective that toured Canada until 2018. Mackenzie is a professor at the Emily Carr University of Art and Design in Vancouver and has received numerous awards including the Queen Elizabeth II Golden and Diamond Jubilee Medals, and the 2017 Governor General Award in Visual and Media Arts. She is represented by Nicholas Metivier Gallery and Art45.
Image: Landon Mackenzie, Forest (Circles for Eli), 2012-2014, synthetic polymer on linen.


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