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 Back  Vignettes | Alberta | September–October 2011

By Robin Laurence

IRAN DO ESPIRITO SANTO: WALL DRAWINGS Illingworth Kerr Gallery, Alberta College of Art + Design, Calgary, through Oct 2 Brazil-based Iran Do Espírito Santo was artist-in-residence at the IKG through the month of June, conducting workshops in the creation of large-scale, collaborative drawing installations. His residency has culminated in a retrospective of his distinctive wall drawings, subtly yet gorgeously modulated through the grey scale. Director/curator Wayne Baerwaldt describes these works as "a sleek blend" of influences, including Minimalism and Geometric Abstraction; at the same time, they play with tone, texture, light, and the “skewing” of expectations.

DANIEL BARKLEY Weiss Gallery, Calgary, Sep 8-Oct 8 Based in Montreal, Barkley creates figurative and portrait paintings that are both realistic and otherworldly. Inflecting skin tones with spectral blues and depicting his nude male models in sometimes dreamy, sometimes grotesque poses and facial expressions, often splashed with pigment, he penetrates the human psyche in ways that are incisive and unsettling.

UP NORTH Art Gallery of Alberta, Edmonton, Sep 10-Jan 8 Exploring ideas of wilderness, the four artists in this show, Jacob Dahl Jürgensen and Simon Dybbroe Møller from Denmark, Ragnar Kjartansson from Iceland, and Kevin Schmidt from Canada, allude to – and in some ways deconstruct – 19th-century romantic attitudes towards remote and seemingly uninhabited landscapes. Among the works on view in the gallery is a film and photographic documentation of performances and interventions undertaken in widely disparate locales, from an unnamed desert island to Tuktoyaktuk.

ALANA TYSON: INSCAPE CABINET ( +15 window RECEPTION) + 15 Window, EPCOR Centre, organized by The New Gallery, Calgary, through Sep 30 Known for her large-scale manipulated fabric pieces, Tyson has created a commanding installation out of some 35 metres of satin. Referencing both sculpture and painting, she creates abstract images and complex surfaces by repeating simple motions–pushing and pulling, crumpling and smoothing–as she works with hand-sewn lining fabric. Her forms and materials evoke everything from exuberant aerial landscapes to sombre coffin linings.

CHRIS MILLAR TrépanierBaer, Calgary, Sep 8-Oct 8 Taking the form of paintings, sculptures and audio recordings (including a new piece titled Gutterballs), Millar’s antic narratives are a curious collage of pop culture influences and absurd situations. The central work in this new exhibition is a sculpture titled 370H55V, evocative of a beyond-nutty sailing vessel or space ship. “The piece deals with the tension between building something and destroying it", Millar says. “The precariousness of the sculpture begs for a crash landing in the desert.”

Iran Do Espirito Santa
Iran Do Espirito Santa

Daniel Barkley
Daniel Barkley

Kevin Schmidt
Kevin Schmidt

Alana Tyson
Alana Tyson

Chris Millar
Chris Millar

 Mon, Sep 5, 2011