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Janet Werner: By All Appearances

Art Gallery of Windsor Sep 18 2009 to Jan 24 2010
Janet Werner  <I>Recliner</I>  2008 Janet Werner Recliner 2008

Janet Werner <I>Recliner</I> 2008

Since the 1990s, Montreal-based artist Janet Werner’s engagement with the genre of portraiture has evolved to include a wider frame of reference—from pretty girls in magazines to bunnies in outer space. Best known for her sophisticated use of colour and dramatic handling of paint, and a style that hovers somewhere between John Singer Sargent and Philip Guston, Werner’s idiomatic portraits are often a site for social inquiry and philosophical musing. In her most recent solo show “Is anything all right?” at the Art Gallery of Windsor, curated by James Patten, Werner builds on her usual repertoire of fluffy, cute, media-saturated images to probe tensions around female subjectivity and conflicts between idealized appearance and lived reality. What permeates Werner’s representation of femininity is not the permanence of youth, but rather a loss of innocence. This exhibition runs through January 24, with a national tour in the planning stages and the debut of Werner’s newest works at Parisian Laundry in March. (401 Riverside Dr W, Windsor ON)

This article was first published online on January 14, 2010.

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