I will be participating in a fascinating group show entitled Inside-Out at the Galerie de la Ville. The press release below explains the call for entry. Mydiptych and statement follow.
Press Release - June, 2018
For Galerie de la Ville’s 2018 Call-for-Entry exhibition, the Curator invited artists to create new work for an exhibition based on the theme Inside-Out. Selfies are now a common and expected form of self-representation intended for the Internet, but they tend to be self-flattering or purely narrative. The Self Portrait as an Art subject, however, has forever been a way for artists to examine themselves in a more analytical, sometimes too brutal way. They often use their own appearance, their own skin as it were, as ‘just’ another medium.
Their challenge posed to artists was for them to create two self portraits: as they saw themselves ‘from the outside’ and as they ‘saw’ themselves “from the inside. The format they were to use was the DIPTYCH, an ancient method of joining paintings, originally using hinged, folding panels to connect elements into pairs but not necessarily joining the two elements mechanically. For the Inside-Out exhibition, artists were to pair their two versions of themselves in dimensions and style and they were to be exhibited side-by-side.
Twenty-two artists who responded to the challenge have created works in various media to explore notions of ageing, of memory, of social interactions, of the conflicts or parallels between thought and emotion. Together, the works underline that while we are all encased in flesh, and while our physical appearances define us visually in the world and to ourselves, our perception and life experiences combine to create inner realities not visible to the eye, yet that are as influential on our vision (understanding, awareness…) of ourselves as of our world.
The artists who responded to the challenge were:
Linda Beck Sidel, Micheline Bertrand, Diane Collet, Deena Dlusy-Apel, Roxanne Dyer, Susan Fowler, Arianna Garcia-Fialdini, Lisa Kimberly Glickman, Bernie Kelly Goulem, Deanne Hall-Habeeb, Theresa Kralik, Nada H. Kyriakos, Norma Lehrer, Norberto Majlis, Ginette Malouin, Susan Pluta, Carol Rabinovitch, Cynthia Sarkis, Patricia Srigley, Josée Turcotte, Josette Wecsu, Jackie Rae Wloski.
They will be present at the opening reception, which will be held on Sunday, June 17, 2018 from 1 to 3 p.m. The exhibition will run from Saturday, June 16 to Sunday, July 15, 2018 at Galerie de la Ville, located in the lower level of the Dollard Cultural Centre, at 12001 De Salaberry Boulevard, in Dollard des Ormeaux. Opening hours are Tuesdays to Fridays from 12 to 4 p.m., and Saturdays and Sundays from 1 to 4 p.m. except for Sundays of opening receptions when the gallery opens from 1 to 3 p.m. To arrange free, guided tours of this exhibition for your group of six or more people, please call 514-684-1012, extension 298. For information about the Galerie, please consult our web site: www.dollardartcentre.com and select the ‘gallery’ option.
Claudine Ascher, Director / Curator, Galerie de la Ville
I can only create an image of who I am at this moment in time. Questions surface during some critical introspection:
- "What feelings dominate my production in 2018?"
- "Why do I feel this way?"
- "What do I want to express in this self-portrait?"
- "What and how much do I want to overtly unveil?"
- "What can I encase in code or symbolism?"
A roller coaster ride of scrutiny reveals what often perturbs me as I create. Self-censorship. My mind is polluted by the zippers I've encountered over the years. And these days, society's pendulum is swinging blindly towards extreme conservatism. How scary is that?
Here is my response, a piece that I throughly enjoyed making while sifting through layers of awareness and bewilderment.
Diptych, acrylic on two 24" X 24"wood panels
The inspiration for this diptych came from historical mugshots of Australian, Swedish and British (Victorian era) criminals. Old black and white photos tend to yellow, scratch and fade over time but nonetheless, these mugshots are fascinating.
The way in which the shots were taken differs: some show the criminal from various vantage points, the face, bust and full body. Sometimes mirrors are placed over a person’s shoulder to simultaneously show a profile and frontal view of the head. There are also group shots, most likely members of the same gang.
Body stats including height, weight, identifying scars are sometimes written over the photos in white ink while others have typed descriptions below the picture. The accused sometimes hold a blackboard which lists registration numbers and describes the crime. Uncooperative individuals are forcibly restrained in order to take the shot. Pain, taunts and sometimes “nothingness” dwell in their eyes.
I chose to hint at these mugshots for a number of reasons; colour, subject matter and the associations that surfaced as I analyzed them. The mugshot format is essentially an unflattering portrait which reveals facts about a person that he or she might prefer remain unknown. There is considerably more to the subject than meets the eye. The same can be said about my diptych.
My outside scenario
I have just been arrested by the art police for self-censorship. Although the world sees a fearless creator, authorities know that I am holding back. The colours of the painting recall those of vintage photographs. Yellow-tinted greys dominate the self-portrait while unexpected accents of colour appear in some areas. I hold a little blackboard in front of me which describes my crime. A few identifying attributes are listed, (works alone, no tattoos, exaggerates, foot fetish), but the mugshot is held with a paper clip and covers most of the typewritten text underneath. Much information remains hidden away. My sassy, crooked smile seems incongruous under the circumstances.
My inside scenario
My tumultuous soul reveals few clues. A gigantic, warped jailhouse key is unlikely to fit in any of the surrounding keyholes. My head is partially covered with the sinner’s veil often seen on the gargoyles/grotesques that ward off evil spirits on ancient buildings. Some anatomy is suggested but little else. My interior remains a mystery, even to myself.