2020 Exhibitions

Louise Bourgeois: What is the Shape of This Problem

January 23 - May 2, 2021

Although best known for her profound sculptures of monumental spiders, evocative human figures, and fleshly anthropomorphic forms, Louise Bourgeois maintained a prolific drawing and writing practice and an ongoing interest in illustrated books and printmaking throughout the course of her long career.

Louise Bourgeois: What is the Shape of This Problem presents 119 works with a focus on prints, textiles, and a series of eight holograms, ranging in date from the 1940s to the early 2000s. These works build on the raw emotional terrain of Bourgeois’ practice, and explore feelings of isolation, anger, and fear through the recurring depiction of the body, childhood, family, architecture, and the passage of time.

This exhibition expands upon Louise Bourgeois: Ode to Forgetting, From the Collections of Jordan D. Schnitzer and his Family Foundation (2018), curated by Ryan Hardesty, Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art, WSU, USA.

Chris Curreri

January 23 - May 2, 2021

Chris Curreri’s works complicate and dissolve seemingly dichotomous states of tenderness and violence; abjection and beauty; seduction and revulsion; self and other. They suggest an unravelling of the hermetic borders that have been constructed between us, others, and things in the world.

This exhibition brings together sculptural and photographic bodies of work that form and frame a sense of porousness and consider the tension between moments where things become fixed and the possibility of continuous, nearly imperceptible shifts—the suggestion that bodies and matter can and do exist within a continuum of potentialities.

Fin Simonetti

January 23 - May 2, 2021

Fin Simonetti works with sculpture, installation, and drawing to investigate the uneasy terrain among desires for security and control, states of fragility and vulnerability, and the sensorial, emotional, and psychological relationships we have to objects, bodies, and spaces. Her work adopts forms and imagery with corporal, visceral resonance that poetically undermine our senses of familiarity and ease.

This exhibition will present new and recent works in carved stone and stained glass that connect to themes of emergency, shelter, and magical thinking. Resonant with historical and familial connections, stone and glass are situated as both disparate and materially analogous. While the qualities of these materials are seemingly oppositional—the brittleness of glass versus the strength of stone—Simonetti considers their parallels, including their origins as natural matter and their ability to break down and endlessly recycle into the environment.

Liz Magor: One Bedroom Apartment

September 26 - December 19, 2020

As one of Canada’s most important artists, Liz Magor has been producing a broad spectrum of sculptural objects, installations, and photography since the mid-1970s. She is best known for sculptures made from both found and cast objects that quietly, yet intensely pull our focus to the things that surround us everyday. Often presenting delicate items in harsh places, Magor creates structures that support fragile and vulnerable things; a practice, one could say, of care. Her work reveals how ordinary objects contain latent qualities that are obscured by our intentions as we acquire, use, and discard these items. In her sculptural arrangements Magor allows things to form relationships with each other that reveal their emotional and historic burdens and strengths.

Samuel Roy-Bois: Presences

September 26 - December 19, 2020

Samuel Roy-Bois’ practice is concerned with the conceptual and material definition of space and the ways the built environment and manufactured things contribute to our understanding of the world. Through sculpture, site-specific installation, and photography, Roy-Bois examines relational networks of objects and their complex philosophical considerations: How do we define ourselves through the creation of structures? Is it possible to conceive of one’s existence outside any material linkage? We make things, but are things also making us?

Jon Sasaki: Killing One Bird With Half A Stone

September 26 - December 19, 2020

Jon Sasaki’s multidisciplinary practice delves into the potentially generative outcomes of failure and futility. Killing One Bird with Half a Stone centres around a selection of the artist’s videos from the past decade that depict the artist as a solitary protagonist who persistently, sometimes recklessly, refuses to accept the obsolescence, failure, or inadequacy of everyday objects. In To Change a Lightbulb (2017), Sasaki resolutely maneuvers a burnt-out lightbulb in the hopes of reconnecting the broken filament and re-illuminating the bulb, if only fleetingly. In Motivation (2013), he shakes a pendant lamp with a frayed cord, which illuminates briefly – tantalizingly – if shaken just so, before inevitably disconnecting again. When faced with the task of scaling a wall in Ladder Stack (2009), he perches multiple step ladders on top of one another, gradually and precariously climbing out of the camera’s view.

Katie Ohe

January 25 - August 29, 2020

Esker Foundation presented an in-depth look at Katie Ohe’s sculptural practice and her unparalleled approach to material, form, space, and movement. This exhibition brought together sculptural work spanning six decades of Ohe’s remarkable career, marking the largest and most comprehensive solo exhibition of her work to date. The exhibition also drew from Ohe’s material archive, revealing a glimpse of a process devoted to research, inquiry, and visual or formal problem solving.

Ohe is best known for her abstract steel sculptures; organic forms that evoke the undulatory surface of a pool of water, the crest of a rolling hill or cumulonimbus cloud, or the cadence of a walking figure. The surfaces of many of these sculptures are subsequently chromed or polished, creating a flawlessly smooth exterior that conjures an illusion of weightlessness and is also irresistible to touch. Indeed, many of Ohe’s works are fully activated only by the push of a human hand. She remarks, “I want my sculptures to induce or invoke touch before you think that you really shouldn’t.”

Kasia Sosnowski: SNEEK-E-PEEP’N

August 17, 2020 - January 31, 2021

Project Space

By turns playful, melancholic, and surreal, Kasia Sosnowski’s ceramic sculptures visually articulate the bodily experience of emotion — unease, anticipation, euphoria. In her new installation, SNEEK-E-PEEP’N, Sosnowski evokes the simultaneous anxiety and frisson of an accidental or uninvited glimpse into a neighbouring window. Her ceramic forms reside behind street-front windows, shrouded gently by a hand-drawn grid. Glimpsed through partially-obscured windows, Sosnowski’s ceramics exist in their own self-contained universe, connected by bonds that we can only intuit from a distance. The exhibition Kasia Sosnowski’s SNEEK-E-PEEP’N features new work made during Sosnowski’s recent Winter 2020 residency at Medalta.