In recognition of Canada’s sesquicentennial in 2017, the City invited professional artists, artist collectives and curators working in visual arts, media arts and fine craft to propose exhibitions that address the theme of mapping.
“Mapping is a fundamental way of converting personal knowledge to transmittable knowledge.”-Arthur Howard Robinson, The Nature of Maps
Mapping includes ways of knowing, organizing and presenting the world as well as our place in it and in relation to others. It helps us track where we’ve been and where we’re going. In addition to cartography, the term mapping has been used in reference to biological, psychological and digital terrains, among others. Mapping can be physical, cultural and emotional. Like an art practice it is a process in constant transformation.
Continuum: Karsh Award artists welcome a new generation
Curator: Melissa Rombout
Artists: Joi T. Arcand, AM Dumouchel, Leslie Hossack, Olivia Johnston, Julia Martin, Meryl McMaster and Ruth Steinberg
September 14 to October 22, 2017
Vernissage: Thursday, September 14, 5:30 to 7:30 pm
The Continuum Talks: A discussion series
Tour with curator Melissa Rombout: Sunday, September 24, 2 p.m.
Presented in English at Karsh-Masson Gallery. Free admission.
Artist talk with AM Dumouchel & Michael Schreier: Thursday, September 28, 7 p.m.
Bilingual presentation at Daïmôn 78 Hanson Street, Gatineau. Free admission.
Panel discussion with Rosalie Favell, Tony Fouhse, Leslie Hossack & Olivia Johnston, moderated by Peter Simpson: Friday, October 13, 7 p.m.
Presented in English at the School of the Photographic Arts: Ottawa, 77 Pamilla Street. Free admission.
Julia Martin & Chantal Gervais in conversation, moderated by Melissa Rombout: Wednesday, October 18, 12:30 to 1:30 p.m.
Presented in English with bilingual Q&A at the University of Ottawa, Department of Visual Arts, 600 Cumberland St./100 Laurier Ave. East, room 114.
Artist talk with Meryl McMaster & Ruth Steinberg: Thursday, October 19, 7 p.m.
Presented in English at Karsh-Masson Gallery. Free admission.
This special exhibition honours the artistic legacy of Yousuf and Malak Karsh while continuing an intergenerational chain of mentorship that fosters camera-based innovation.
Continuum is a project based on connecting many moments in time. It was conceived as a way to celebrate a new wave of emerging Ottawa artists during Canada’s sesquicentennial year. Recipients of the City of Ottawa’s prestigious Karsh Award were invited to choose a local Ottawa artist working with photography as a medium, a relative newcomer to stand in the spotlight.
The Karsh photographers, innovators stylistically, gracious in comportment and masters of film-based photography, would no doubt be astonished and delighted by the myriad of camera-based practices in this exhibition, and their roles as progenitors of a chain of connection radiating outward. These common threads of welcome entwine here.
- Excerpt from the essay by Melissa Rombout
Joi T. Arcand, "To the Depth of a Plow" I, II,
2017, black and white photographs on fibre paper, 112 x 112 cm (each). Courtesy of the artist.
Joi T. Arcand is a photo-based artist and member of the Muskeg Lake Cree Nation. A graduate of University of Saskatchewan’s fine arts program, she founded the Indigenous arts journal kimiwan 'zine, and co-founded Red Shift Gallery (Saskatoon). Her work has been exhibited at the Contemporary Native Art Biennial (Montreal), Kenderdine Art Gallery and aka artist-run (Saskatoon), Access Gallery (Vancouver) and internationally in London, Bilbao, and the United States.
AM Dumouchel, Flesh and Stones I, II, III
(triptych), 2017, scannography and digital collage mounted on acrylic, 203 x 51 cm (each). Courtesy of the artist.
AM Dumouchel completed a Master of Fine Arts in 2014 at the University of Ottawa and received the Michel Goulet Award, among others. The time she spent in Gatineau, Montreal and Ottawa has contributed to the evolution of her practice. She is represented by PDA Projects and has exhibited her work across Canada and internationally. Her creations can also be found in several private collections. In addition to her artistic practice, she teaches photography at the University of Ottawa.
Leslie Hossack, 7:41:13 am, June 6th, Juno Beach, Courseulles-sur-Mer,
2015, pigment ink on cotton fibre, 74 x 110 cm. Courtesy of the artist.
Focusing on the built environment and related archival documents, Leslie Hossack has completed major studies of historic architecture in Vancouver, Paris, Berlin, Jerusalem, Moscow, London, Normandy and Vienna. In 2012, she participated in the Canadian Forces Artists Program and was deployed to Kosovo. Her books include: H-Hour; Registered; Charting Churchill; Testament; Cities of Stone, People of Dust and Berlin Studien.
Olivia Johnston, Madonna with Crescent Moon (Rachel)
, 2017, inkjet print on paper, custom-made MDF frame and imitation gold leaf, 77 x 54 x 3 cm. Courtesy of the artist.
A graduate of Carleton University’s art history program, Olivia Johnston teaches photographic history at the School of the Photographic Arts: Ottawa. Her photo-based and multi-media work explores questions concerning art history, photography, gender, identity, vulnerability, and identity. She has exhibited nationally and internationally, and her work can be found in numerous publications. In 2017, Johnston was shortlisted as a finalist for the RBC Emerging Artist Award.
Julia Martin, Prayer Spaces I and II
(diptych), 2016, inkjet prints on paper, 101 x 76 cm (each). Courtesy of the artist.
Julia Martin creates personal work: she is as confident in her expertise in the subject matter as she is distressed by the depths in which we come to know ourselves. Her practice relies on and exploits the tensions between humour and tragedy, text and image, chance and deliberation. Martin's phone has become her studio. Likely an excuse not to leave her apartment. Martin earned an MFA from the University of Ottawa in 2015. It required leaving her apartment.
Meryl McMaster, Night Fragments,
2015, archival pigment print on watercolour paper, 76 x 114 cm. Courtesy of the artist.
Meryl McMaster extends her practice beyond straight photography by incorporating the manual production of props or sculptural garments, performance and self-reflection. Her work explores questions of how we construct our sense of self through lineage, history and culture. A graduate in photography from the Ontario College of Art and Design University, McMaster was long listed for the 2016 Sobey Art Award.
Ruth Steinberg, Lindsay,
2014, digital archival print, 56 x 56 cm. Courtesy of the artist.
Ruth Steinberg holds a BFA from the University of Manitoba and is a graduate of the School of the Photographic Arts: Ottawa. She created the series What the Body Remembers during her residency at Enriched Bread Artists in the autumn of 2014. Steinberg takes her inspiration from photographers working in a strong storytelling tradition, including Diane Arbus, Mary Ellen Mark, Dorothea Lange, Gordon Parks, and Sally Mann.
A former photo historian at Library and Archives Canada, Melissa Rombout is an independent curator of national and international photo-based projects. She led an innovative re-examination of Yousuf Karsh’s work produced by the (then) Portrait Gallery of Canada and Canada Science and Technology Museum: Karsh: Image Maker, recipient of the Canadian Museums Association Award of Outstanding Achievement (2010). Rombout is a member of the Amsterdam School for Cultural Analysis, where she researches contemporary photography and political agency.