Reviews

Melissa Tremblett’s Reprise

Gut Feeling

MEMORY OF ROADSIDE FLOWERS

Care and Kinship in the Work of Emily Critch

Emily Critch is a visual artist, curator, and writer of Mi’kmaq and settler ancestry from Elmastukwek, Ktaqamkuk (Bay of Island, Newfoundland). Critch’s work was recently featured in Future Possible (2019) at The Rooms and her upcoming curatorial project mitsujuk | kussikuashu | kpitni’sewet | they sew will be exhibiting in Corner Brook in 2020. Critch...

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Memorial Work by Venezuelan Diaspora Artists

“Hometactics,” according to Latina philosopher Mariana Ortega, is a notion of everyday praxis as a way to feel comfortable in unwelcoming worlds, all the while remaining aware of the oppressive nature of dominant norms in those worlds. The contradiction of finding comfort in a hostile environment can be observed in Memorial: Work by Venezuelan Diaspora...

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Listening to Silence

"What Carries Us" at The Rooms

What does it mean to revisit the stories we’ve been told, the stories that purport to tell us who we are? And why might we do so in the first place? This is the premise that underpins What Carries Us: Newfoundland and Labrador in the Black Atlantic, an exhibition curated by Toronto-based artist, curator, and...

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Postmodern Blackness in Heather Hart’s Northern Oracle

Black American visual artist Heather Hart’s series of rooftop oracles based on the four directions (East, West, North, and South) is an-ongoing series of work that offers prophetic predictions for imagining new futures. Most recently, she’s created Northern Oracle, an exhibition curated by Ann MacDonald and presented in partnership with the Africville Heritage Trust at...

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Abbas Akhavan Explores Faith, Theatre & Architecture in script for an island on Fogo

In fall of 2019, multidisciplinary artist Abbas Akhavan hung two ten-foot wide theatre curtains from a twelve-foot scaffolding on the beach in the small community of Joe Batt’s Arm on Newfoundland’s Fogo Island. The wind animated the velvet curtains, choreographing a dance between the undulating fabric and the waves in front of them, transforming the...

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Remembering Africville

Nova Scotia was once home to Africville, one of the oldest Black settlements outside of the African Continent. Africville’s oral history supports its existence as far back as the 1700s. It was located on the Bedford basin of the city of Halifax in the general area the Alexander Murray MacKay Bridge now occupies. In the...

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Relocation by “Renoviction”

New survey reveals the causes of the steep decline in Halifax’s North End artist studios

When I conducted a survey of 46 Halifax-based artists in October 2019, the number one reason they gave for leaving their North End studios was eviction/demolition. This staggering statistic comes as no surprise to artists who have been relocated in various waves of “renoviction” in the last decade.

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Rogue, Rebellious, Ill-behaved, Black

Here We Are Here: Black Canadian Contemporary Art

Poet and artist Sylvia D. Hamilton’s multimedia installation of images, objects, and sound is heard and carried throughout the powerful exhibition Here We Are Here: Black Canadian Contemporary Art at the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia in Halifax, which inspired the title of the group show. The creation of this exhibit occurred within a specific...

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Keeping the Lights On: Will Gill, Pepa Chan and Mike Gough

There is no exclusive formula that dictates whether a person is a Newfoundland artist. There is no set milestone one must reach to attain such title. For me, it’s simple: does this artist have a lasting and respectful relationship with this place? Do they speak with the place rather than at the place? Do they want to be here?

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All These In-betweens

Logan MacDonald on how to reclaim what has been lost

MacDonald tells me that “this work is sad. It is about contemporary mourning and historical mourning, but it is also a call to action and to empathy.” In these betweens there is also a generative tension that illuminates hope and possibility.

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Ketu’elmita’jik / They want to go home

Jordan Bennett

When you first walk into the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia’s exhibition space holding Ketu’elmita’jik, created by Ktaqmkuk (Newfoundland) artist Jordan Bennett, the colours and designs flood your senses. They enter you like some otherworldly creation that has seeped into your brain and started playing music you can’t quite hear. This site-specific work fills the...

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You Are Not Here

Juan Ortiz-Apuy draws power through imitation

Juan Ortiz-Apuy’s Fountain Mist is disorienting, like the moment a dream snaps into a nightmare. You are not here. A spectre haunts the mixed-media installation, stalking through the sheen of blues, oranges, and yellows—the spectre of someone else’s dream being imposed on you, also known as advertising. The dream is at its eeriest in a...

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