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Indepth Arts News:

"Provisional Worlds: Expendables Surrounding Us"
2002-11-20 until 2003-03-02
Art Gallery of Ontario
Toronto, ON, CA

Provisional Worlds presents an exciting, new generation of artists from Canada, the United States and Britain, who challenge our perception of the expendable “stuff” that surrounds us every day. The exhibition will profile the work of seven artists: James Carl (Toronto), Tony Feher (New York), Christie Frields (Los Angeles), Sara MacKillop (London, England), Damian Moppett (Vancouver), Kelly Richardson (Toronto/Halifax) and Shirley Tse (Los Angeles). These artists find their inspiration in mass-produced objects, popular media and synthetic materials.

Through the skilful, yet playful, use of provisional commodities, ranging from plastic bottles and record sleeves, to Styrofoam, bar codes and B movies, these artists raise questions about what everyone sees and consumes.

“This exhibition is a gathering of artists who share certain sensibilities,” states Matthew Teitelbaum, AGO Director and CEO. “It is the artists’ lively engagement with everyday materials that illustrates the inventiveness of the human spirit.”

Provisional Worlds promotes the art of looking at the overlooked. The creativity displayed in the exhibition invites an examination of current art-making practices – our notions of what art is or what art can be. While the artists in the exhibition are inspired by the legacies of their past masters, they do not rely on grand gestures. They choose, instead, to make-do with what the everyday world offers.

“The works that comprise Provisional Worlds reflect a world of rapid transitions and a culture of convenience,” explains Jessica Bradley, AGO curator of contemporary art. “These artists delight in the commonly available and the disposable, while heightening our awareness of the look and feel of mass-market consumerism.”

The exhibition will feature a wide spectrum of media, including site-specific installations, video projections, sculptures and drawing. Highlights include: James Carl’s on-site installation, a two-dimensional vinyl awning that adorns the AGO facade; Tony Feher’s Enjoy, 2001, a fortress-like structure of soft drink crates; Christie Frields’ Untitled, 2000, a bar code-inspired work; Sara MacKillop’s Skyline, 2001, a skyscraper-like grid structure made with a cardboard game board; Damian Moppett’s Impure Systems 1999-2000, a photographic series; Kelly Richardson’s Camp, 2000, a video installation; and Shirley Tse’s Polyworks, 2000, a labyrinth of interconnected packing modules.

Damian Moppett (Canadian, born 1969)
Impure Systems (1 of 10), 1999-2000
Fuji Crystal archive print mounted on 12" board, edition of 2
Courtesy of Catriona Jeffries Gallery, Vancouver
© 2002 Damian Moppett

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