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  • PUBLISHED on October 09, 2012

Every Line & Every Other Line Bruce LaBruce \ Cathy Busby \ Brendan Fernandes \ Suzy Lake \ Arthur Renwick Curator’s essay by J.J. Kegan McFadden “It is the face that has the privilege, endlessly observed, of expressing itself on its own expression.  The minute play of the facial actors (eyes, mouth, brows, chin, nose) […]

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  • PUBLISHED on May 03, 2012

In conjunction with Heather Passmore’s exhibition Gatekeepers, there was a panel discussion with Jen Budney (Associate curator, Mendel Art Gallery), Susan Shantz (Faculty, Art & Art History, University of Saskatchewan), featured artist Heather Passmore and moderated by AKA Director Dagmara Genda. This took place on May 5th, 2012, from 1:30 to 3:30 pm in the AKA […]

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  • PUBLISHED on January 02, 2012

Arriving at Dustin Wilson’s artist talk at AKA Gallery I was running a little behind schedule. Delicate matters of personal hygiene demanded some attention thus delaying my departure, and so I walked tardily right into the middle of his enchanting lecture. Three seconds in and I was utterly absorbed by an elaborate yet stoic case study, as the artist proceeded to layer text onto the open terrain of the future.

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  • PUBLISHED on November 02, 2011

Beginning to conceptualise the ideas presented in Baker’s works in a materialist sense allows us to begin to read how the works encode physical space as a series of fractured topographies. What is depicted is a homogenous materiality (discarded plastics) transmogrified to replicate a neo-Romantic concept of the whole. Baker’s worlds, as depicted in the Continuity in Disgrace and Discards portend a technique of art reminiscent of Shylovsky’s “defamiliarisation”; an attempt to extend the process of perception through the radical distancing of the viewer to the imagined lifeworld. Baker presents a dedicated space in which the viewer must contemplate the idea of inhabitation.

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  • PUBLISHED on September 17, 2011

Here we go. We are, after all, here to go. Let’s set out from the beginning with an implicit admission of ignorance, or uncertainty, at the very least. For if we set out expecting to have our prejudices and conceits confirmed, confirmed they will be. Saying “I don’t know” will stimulate a cascade of action potential across our prefrontal cortices and what happens next is anyone’s guess. This assemblage of ideas is presented as an initiation into an experiential methodology, tinged here and there with healthy doses of revealing madness; a metaheuristic tool for thinking about thinking.

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  • PUBLISHED on June 22, 2011

Michel Boutin has often been described as a Folk artist heavily influenced by his French Canadian and Métis roots. In previous exhibitions of his work this influence has focused on critiques of the Church, Spirituality and on the historical legacies of his own family’s Settler narratives and Indigenous roots. While stylistically Boutin does borrow from the traditions of Folk art and the discourse around “outsider” art, the Folk label still leaves much off the table.

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  • PUBLISHED on May 02, 2011

Sound art has relational currency. It is social, spatial, physical, temporal and performative. The Circulation of Fluids by Catherine Béchard and Sabin Hudon is an interactive multi-channel sound installation about listening, sound, silence and slow movement using technology as a tool to serve content. Their investigation is framed by qualitative, symbolic, mnemonic and fluid properties of water.

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  • PUBLISHED on January 01, 2011

Les Choses Sont Contre Nous sounds like a heady reference to French theory à la the imported ideas of Jacques Derrida or Jean Baudrillard transferred often contentiously from literary theory to art criticism. The title translates to “things are against us” alluding to an opacity that is often attributed to theoretical discourse as well as to the exhibition’s subtle antagonism toward the viewer. After entering AKA by pulling a door labelled “push,” the viewer is greeted by a something resembling an obstacle course or construction site. The entrance is obscured by a short winding hallway that looks only half complete.

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  • PUBLISHED on October 03, 2010

Curatorial essay by Bart Gazzola To even attempt to speak of painting in Saskatchewan in a homogenous manner, to even attempt to pare that down to Saskatoon, in a further desire to make it all a comfortable peg to fit in the appropriate hole, is to deny the contested histories that are Saskatchewan. That is […]

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  • PUBLISHED on June 03, 2010

Curatorial essay by Tod Emel. In the middle of the last century, there developed in pockets around North America a complex subculture around customizing vehicles for increased performance and wildly enhanced aesthetics. Fueled by a heady and potentially reckless combination of post-war optimism and disposable income, these young hot-rodders staked their claims to being the […]

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