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Current Exhibition

“Watercolour”
Marie-Claire Blais, Catherine Bolduc, Pierre Dorion, Karilee Fuglem, Sky Glabush, Jim Holyoak, Henri Michaux, Goodridge Roberts, Matt Shane, Yves Tessier
Guest Curator:  Michael Merrill


Yves Tessier, The Red Paint Job, 1994. Aquarelle sur papier / watercolour on paper, 23 x 50 cm

Vernissage: Thursday March 7 at 6 pm
Exhibition: March 8 to 30
Curator’s Talk: Thursday March 21 at 6:30 pm

The McClure Gallery is delighted to present “Watercolour”. Generally a transparent medium, watercolour exposes the thinking of the artist at work. The paper is primary, providing the lightest tone and, whatever the approach – reckless or precise – it must be considered from the beginning. The artworks in this exhibition feature diverse ways of working with watercolour, some of which fall just beyond the limits of what defines the medium, hence the quotations surrounding the title of this show.

This exhibition revolves around two works, one by Henri Michaux (who approached the medium from what the curator refers to as an “interior vision”), and one by Goodridge Roberts (an “exterior vision”). Michaux refused to paint an existing thing, and Roberts painted only that which exists; Michaux conjured visions out of material reactions, while Roberts interpreted reality, en plein air.

The other artists in the show are situated in various relations to these ideas. Pierre Dorion rigorously extracts the essence of photographic sources. Catherine Bolduc discovers new worlds with ink and watercolour. Karilee Fuglem makes “invisible drawings”. Matt Shane and Jim Holyoak, who often work together, employ ink and watercolour to experiment with contemporary depictions of landscapes – Shane creates urban vistas in black and white, while Holyoak ventures into nature, combining plein air drawing with aspects of Asian ink painting, leaving the process open to accident. Yves Tessier creates dream-like works, combining images from life, film, found images, and fantasy. Marie-Claire Blais traces delicate optical patterns with pigment. Sky Glabush reinvents himself with each new work.

Whatever the pictorial philosophies, the reality is in the materials themselves – a combination of pigment, gum arabic, water, soot, glue, and paper. When the paper is saturated with water and the paint is following its nature, the balance of accident and intention is thrilling. Always, the medium is the message.

Gallery Hours: Tuesday to Friday 12 pm to 6 pm; Saturday 12 pm to 5 pm

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