This group exhibition explores time as a problematic, looking critically at nostalgia and future utopias. Charting the hopes of tomorrow an installation by Elizabeth Zvonar consists of two large round mirrors that face one another creating an infinite reflection. Superimposed on the face of one are the astrological birth charts of Voyager 1 and 2. Sent into space in August and September 1977, Voyager 1 and 2 contain the Golden Record, a NASA funded map of humanity intended to provide a snapshot of planet earth (circa 1974) for other life forms light years away. Reflecting the optimism of the era, Zvonar’s work troubles the distinctions between belief and truth and brings our understanding of future into question.
Holly Ward’s video work depicts a flipbook, created from Susan Bruce’s Three Early Modern Utopias, a compendium containing Utopia by Thomas Moore, New Atlantis by Francis Bacon and The Isle of Pines by Henry Neville. Ward makes use of an accidental yellow ink stain that has saturated many pages of the book, which when animated resembles a setting or rising sun, depending on the direction the pages are flipped. Through the use of the sunset/sunrise in relation to the literary content of the book, Ward points to the ambiguity of language as well as the recurring notion and function of hope as a still living platform of contemplation and discussion.
Eric Deis’ Yesterday’s Sunset installation makes use of video delay technology to present video of the previous day’s sunset. On one hand overtly nostalgic, Deis’ work also employs the familiar motif of a sunset in order to point to, and ruminate on, issues such as urban development, gentrification, and death. In a similar gesture, Another Day, a 3-monitor installation by Paul Ramirez Jonas, makes use of a homemade computer to continually count down the hours until sunrise for 90 cities around the world. Resembling arrival and departure monitors at airports, as each city reaches sunrise it disappears from the top of the list making room for the countdown in another city to begin. An infinite loop, Another Day, like much of Ramirez Jonas’ work, draws attention to the failure and sadness that is evoked when nostalgia is relied on as path towards the future.
Eric Deis an interdisciplinary artist from Vancouver, Canada. Deis is a graduate of Emily Carr Institute of Art and Design, Vancouver (B.F.A.) and the University of California, San Diego (M.F.A.). His work has been exhibited in Canada, Denmark, Ireland, Brazil, Mexico, United States, and Germany.
New York-based artist Paul Ramirez Jonas has exhibited internationally extensively at venues such as Ikon Gallery, Birmingham; Miami Art Museum, Miami; the New Museum, New York; and Büro Friedrich, Berlin.
Holly Ward is a Vancouver-based interdisciplinary artist working with sculpture, multi-media installation and drawing as means to examine representations of social progress and political power. She received her BFA (interdisciplinary) from the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design in 1999 and her MFA (studio) from the University of Guelph in 2006. She has received numerous awards for her artistic output, including the Joseph Beuys Memorial Scholarship (NSCAD) and The Canada Council for the Arts Creation/Production Grant. Holly Ward has had solo exhibitions across Canada; at the Or Gallery (Vancouver), YYZ Artists’ Outlet (Toronto), Oeil Du Poisson (Quebec), and Struts Artist-Run Centre (Sackville), amongst others. She has been included in numerous group exhibitions in Canada, London (UK), Mexico City, New York, Bergen (Norway) and Seoul (South Korea), and will be exhibiting at the Morris and Helen Belkin Gallery at UBC this summer. _The Shape of Things to Come_ (the title of which is derived from H.G.Wells’ 1933 dystopian novel) is a series of nine unique plexiglass sculptures, each of which contains a digital audio file converted to an electrical signal which triggers a flickering pattern in a grid of LED lights. Each audio file contains a public lecture which has subsequently been disseminated on the internet. Each lecture, the oldest of which dates from 2004, represents a distinct scientific and/or academic discussion of pressing concerns in their respective disciplines, in order to be better capable of adapting to what is discussed as the now ‘immanent’ future.
Elizabeth Zvonar’s works have spanned a variety of mediums, from performances and interventions to installations, and most recently, sculpture, digital collages, and text-based works. Zvonar (b. 1972) is a graduate of Emily Carr University. Her recent exhibitions include Parallel Dimension at Artspeak Gallery (Vancouver), Fade Away and Radiate at the Cohan and Leslie Gallery (New York), Concrete Language at the Contemporary Art Gallery (Vancouver), and The Thing, All That Is Solid Melts Into Air, organized by the Museum Van Hedendaagse Kunst (Mechelen, Belgium). She has a forthcoming solo exhibition at the Contemporary Art Gallery in November 2009. In 2008 Zvonar was the inaugural artist at the Malaspina Print Research Residency and was an artist in residence at the Banff Centre during the Janice Kerbel led thematic residency, Cosmic Ray Research