July 19 - September 7, 2014
Tania Love begins with a Japanese technique of painting with ink directly on the surface of water. Floating forms emerge, combine and break apart as she gently prods the surface, creating cellular lattice works. An almost meditative connection between inner and outer is reflected in the resulting patterns. These images are transferred to paper and then further manipulated by carefully cutting away areas to create lace-like fabrics. The smallest ones seem like microscopic residents of a Petri dish, the largest sprawl like skin or porous organs across the wall.
The difference between the positive and negative spaces in the imagery is paralleled by Love’s micro and macro views of the world, and the permeability and constant flow between them.
Rui Pimenta creates colourful abstract paintings that incorporate light and depth and transparency in a way that is completely surprising and joyful. By applying pigments and paints to layers of glass, wax and clear liquid resin he is able to create floating entities that resemble single cell creatures we could imagine seeing through a microscope. The edges and colours seem to slide around – in part because of the way Pimenta builds lights into the displays – and it is hard not to imagine some bodily fluid that these creatures call home.
Pimenta means for us to see ourselves in these paintings: but an abstracted version of ourselves. For while it is easy to imagine that these are portraits of each of us, just rendered exceedingly close-up and on an impossibly magnified scale, he calls into question our ability to take the infinite (or infinitesimal) quality of the human spirit on faith. We’ve never seen cells but we know we are composed almost entirely of them. At the other end of the spectrum, “we humans are able to conceive of an infinite self that transcends limitations.” The materiality of our bodies and the materiality of his paintings, with their unusual layering of transparent and coloured masses, immediately suggests another mode of being that is beyond our perception. According to the artist, “these ethereal paintings play with light and shadow, as if existing somewhere between the material and the immaterial, between the body and the soul.”
Tania Love is a Toronto based visual artist who received her Bachelor of Arts with distinction from the University of Guelph. A recipient of numerous grants and international residencies, her research and art practice has taken her across Europe, the USA and India.
Born in Lisbon, Portugal, Rui Pimenta lives and works in Toronto. He is a visual artist and independent curator whose work has been exhibited both internationally and across Canada and is represented by commercial galleries in Ottawa, Hamilton, Vancouver, Antwerp and Lisbon. He studied at the Toronto School of Art and graduated with honours in Philosophy and Humanities from York University.