Marking Time

The leaping off point for this installation/exhibition held at Toronto’s Loop Gallery in Fall 2018, is the large-scale oil painting, Archipelago, which I did on Fogo Island while attending a residency there in 2011. This is the painting’s professional Toronto debut, and it is a singular and visceral work, which I painted directly onto the plywood wallboards supplied to us in the Fogo Island Long Studio. Archipelago stands as an homage and portrait of an island forged 420 million years ago by ice, fire and sea, the markings of which manifest at every turn, as geological scars and patterns, rock forms, tidal pools and time-worn textures, in expansive and minute scales equally.

New graphite drawings created to respond to and compliment Archipelago explore a range of demarcations, ravages and ruptures, all traces and evidence of our planet’s evolution. The graphite offers velvety weight and gravitas while at the same time as it lends transcendence through specific erasures, and metaphoric agency that exploits the marriage of material and theme. Three time-worn boulders resolutely mark the space between Archipelago and the graphite drawings and offer haptic resting spots from which to take in the work. A new video and soundscape of water lapping over a large, smooth granite rock-face present as a constant reminder of the ongoing geological process.

My intention with Marking Time is that each of these individual work possesses their own agency, at the same time as the assembled installation invites an engaging spatial experience, and offers an oblique yet compelling narrative.

Review by Nathan Flint