June 9, 2023

ELEMENTAL: Seeing in Slow Motion by Joan Borsa

TrépanierBaer Gallery prepared a catalogue for the ELEMENTAL: Martha Townsend, Stéphane La Rue, Al McWilliams, and asked curator and writer Joan Borsa to write its accompanying  text.  She titled this essay ELEMENTAL: Seeing in Slow Motion, and she begins by noting:

I start this essay from the position of an attentive traveler, intrigued by the liminal space between the familiar and the unfamiliar that the enigmatic and introspective works in this exhibition invite me to navigate. Some aspects of these works are crystal clear: the practices are grounded in a sensuous and refined materiality, a simplicity of form, a pared-down aesthetic sensibility, and a rudimentary approach to technologies; but what Martha Townsend, Al McWilliams, and Stéphane La Rue do with elemental materials and form activates tensions, unhinges expectations, resists easy readings, and pushes against the certainties of art classification systems.

The essay provides salient commentary as how the works are viewed and perhaps ask to be viewed given their materials and their abstract nature. To read the entire, please open the PDF listed below.

Image Credit:
Installation View of
ELEMENTAL: Martha Townsend, Stéphane La Rue, Al McWilliams