- Rebecca Ladds – Making Mud with Milk Opening Reception: September 6th, 6:00-9:00pmExhibition Dates: September 6th-September 30th 2018Location: Project Gallery, 1210 Dundas Street East
Project Gallery is pleased to present an exhibition of new work by Rebecca Ladds running concurrently with ‘I Like for you to be Still’ by Sarah Letovsky.
‘Making Mud with Milk’ displays the artist’s obsessive act of collecting, reproducing and fixating on historically recurring imagery. This fixation is an attempt to understand the universal complexities of intimacy, association and memory through image. Focusing on the potential for these things to be at the same time nurturing and oppressive; a feeling of being capable of both love and hate, preferring neither, accepting both.
Inspired by tableau staging in theatre and cinema, the act of drawing canonizes seemingly commonplace imagery, elevating their subject’s status from the familiar to the dramatic. Their impact from afar can be very different than when viewed up close and they invite a view from both. The gallery space becomes a multi-dimensional collage of images with Ladds’ drawings acting as locations for pause. It is possible for these images to relate to each other, some only based on proximity, much like bodies passing each other in a room, performing a narrative without words.
Motivated by the feeling that despite how comfortable we are with these subjects, they are essentially profound, strange and spectacular. By changing their scale, isolating them from their environment/the rest of their bodies, removing colour and smoothing the textures, all that remains is a neutral outer shell. Their openness makes them vessels, spaces to be filled with memory. Whose hands are those? They’re yours. They may be your mother’s too. Does it make you feel at ease?
With a nod to her her own experiences and her mother’s interest in studying floral arranging in her youth, Ladds exhibits a collection of custom bouquets and preserves their composition in the form of drawings, aiming to document the impermanent subject as an act of gratitude; shedding light on the artist’s process in the creation of her work.
Rebecca Ladds is a visual artist currently based in Montreal, Quebec. Ladds graduated OCADU in 2014 with a BFA in Printmaking and has completed residencies in Toronto ON, Prince Edward County ON, and Florence, Italy. Ladds’ work has been shown in Toronto at the Toronto International Art Fair, in several collaborations with the Drake Hotel and Properties, The Gladstone Hotel, at the Art Gallery of Ontario for the Art With Heart Auction and as well as the Elgin Winter Garden Theater.
- Sarah Letovsky – I Like For You to be Still Opening Reception: September 6th, 6:00-9:00pmExhibition Dates: September 6th-September 30th 2018Location: Project Gallery, 1210 Dundas Street East
Project Gallery is pleased to present an exhibition of new paintings by Sarah Letovsky running concurrently with ‘Making Mud with Milk’ by Rebecca Ladds.
Letovsky takes inspiration from the tradition of figurative painting and the female subject as muse, with a painting language wholly her own – in which flesh, faces and background invite a play between subject, brushstroke, and the physical process of painting.
In this series of work, Letovsky’s reverence for the portrait evolves to encompass more of the figure and spatial context; in doing so, evoking a sense of intimacy, hinting at spaces of belonging and familiarity such as bedrooms and living rooms. The paintings are reminiscent of selfies; a camera is never directly featured but implied, and raises questions about who the image is for, and by. The work invites the viewer to consider the self-photograph as a contradiction and an equilibrium in which the private becomes public, a work of both intimacy and exhibitionism.
The title of the show is a reference to Pablo Neruda’s poem of the same name, in which Neruda describes the quintessential female muse – still and silent, an object of desire set apart to gaze upon:
I like for you to be still: it is as though you were absent,
and you hear me from far away and my voice does not
It seems as though your eyes had flown away
and it seems that a kiss had sealed your mouth.
Letovsky’s subjects challenge this narrative; they are both confrontational and inviting, a director in their own representation. Their image is a performance, and we are invited to view the subject and their body through a negotiation of the self. It also invites us to consider the particularly gendered discussion of self-documentation. As Anne Burns discusses in Self(ie)-Discipline, ”the gendering of selfies and the prevalent assumption that they act as proof of narcissism limit how women’s personal photography is socially valued… selfishness is a particularly barbed insult when directed at women, as it references the subject’s transgression of the norm of feminine self-sacrifice”.
Letovsky also takes inspiration from her love of prose and poetry, in particular, stories of the interior lives of women and girls, and their private narratives of love, joy, anger, grief, self-pity, and insecurity operating beneath the surface. In these paintings, Letovsky’s subjects are caught in an ambiguous and mundane moment; they seem observant, sexual, uncertain, and sometimes indifferent or bored – belying a rich interior complexity.
Sarah Letovsky lives and works in Toronto, Canada. She graduated from the University of King’s College in Halifax in 2009 where she studied literature and film. She completed her BFA at OCAD University in 2014 in Drawing and Painting and was the recipient of the Mrs. W.O. Forsyth Award for Excellence in Painting. Her first solo exhibition with Project Gallery, Girls Girls Girls, opened in 2016. Most recently Letovsky exhibited in the group show “Today’s Paper” at Angell Gallery in Toronto.
- Court Gee – Learning by Doing
Opening Reception: August 24th, 7:00-9:00pm
Exhibition Dates: August 24 – September 29 2018
Location: Project Studios 184 Munro Street
Subverting function with wry humour, Court Gee uses readymade and craft based materials to create comedic, and often absurd, installations. responding to the ‘landscape’ of the site, these materials are strategically positioned, with the tropes of formal presentation in mind, to resist their intended use. Because of this, these works often read as objects out of place.
Through these pairings Court Gee puts into question the viewers own relationship to the materials, situating the nonsensical narratives in a continuous loop of reality and artificial. The viewer is left to challenge and rediscover their relationships to everyday objects.
Court Gee is a recent graduate of OCAD University and has exhibited at XPACE Cultural Centre, Ignite Gallery, Mercedes-Benz Financial amongst others. ‘Learning by Doing’ is Gee’s first solo exhibition.
Project Studios is located at 184 Munro Street (rear) and is open for receptions and by appointment only. For more information please contact firstname.lastname@example.org