A Space, Toronto May 16 to June 14, 2014
Katharine Mulherin Contemporary Art Projects, Toronto May 16 to June 16, 2013
The mythology of General Idea hovered in a haze around the top floors of the Art Gallery of Ontario throughout “Haute Culture: General Idea, A Retrospective 1969–1994.” In this review from our Winter 2012 issue, Ashley Johnson reflects on the global legacy of this Canadian collective.
The world that we are confronted with on a daily basis is a complex, multi-layered chaos that is continually flexing and moving.
The anthropologist Victor Turner defined the word liminality as “betwixt and between.” It is a transitional state that involves moving between two existential planes; normal restraints on behaviour and understanding are relaxed, leading to new perspectives. Roger Ballen’s photographs epitomize this process.
Simon Starling’s exhibition “Cuttings (Supplement),” at The Power Plant, is part of an ongoing dialogue between artist and gallery that draws on several years of mutual support. (The Power Plant helped realize his 2005 show “Cuttings” at the Museum für Gegenwartskunst in Basel.)
In their current Toronto exhibition, the Sanchez brothers continue their photographic examination of dark mass media obsessions. They even use an actual media figure—JonBenet Ramsey’s self-proclaimed killer, John Mark Karr—as a model, and bring news-fodder natural disasters home with a disturbing installation.
In this review of “Signals in the Dark: Art in the Shadows of War,” writer Ashley Johnson notes that while “it’s questionable how effective art can be in changing public perception of war, but it’s important to continually challenge the military mindset,” as he believes is the case in this “extraordinary” exhibition.
The 19th century was an extraordinary period of colonization and cultural expansion. The European powers vied with one another to seize land and explorers were dispatched to open and record these new worlds, annexing territories as they went.