Graduating Students’ Exhibition

June 6 – June 22, 2022
 

The FOFA Gallery and VAV Gallery are pleased to co-present a dynamic collection of works as part of Concordia University’s Faculty of Fine Arts Graduating Students Exhibition. The exhibition moves through both the VAV and FOFA spaces and is shaped to reflect the strength and diversity of practices at the undergraduate and graduate levels.   

Joé Côté-Rancourt

fn'être sur lestracedequi, 2021 
inkjet print, lived store 
3’6” x 3’6”

Bio

Born in Limoilou, Joé Côté-Rancourt moved from the suburb of Atontarégué "Kebec" (Quebec) to Hochelaga where he now resides and works. He recently completed a Bachelor's degree in Sculpture at Concordia University. During his degree, he founded the Sculpture Student Association and contributed to the development of ecological practices in the arts at Concordia.

Statement

This digital collage series has been produced within the same .psd file since 2017. Layers accumulate through the addition of found images, taken by the artist or provided by acquaintances on the web or irl. The aesthetic of film and magazine posters, easily immersed in the daily life of the public, offers a subversive visual mythology, which questions the ostensible narrative of modern capitalism.

IG @joe.c_r

Virginie Fillion-Fecteau

Fibres, 2021 
Dry pastel on Japanese paper 
40” x 70” 

Photo credit: Paul Litherland

Bio

Virginie Fillion-Fecteau lives and works in Montreal. She uses drawing and printmaking to create a "vertical" view of human experience in an attempt to exorcise her fear of death. Working with images drawn from life cycles, she plays with repetition, mirrored composition, patterns, scale, and materials to create a bridge between the viewer's body and the artwork’s spatiality.
The artist was the recipient of the Concordia Alumni Association Fine Arts Award in 2021, and her work has been showcased in the United States, Canada and Europe.

Statement

The work Fibres is a drawing made with dry pastels and inspired by a Persian rug found in the artist's domestic space. The carpet’s colourful patterns are altered to dissolve into the drawing’s spatial plane, combining fragments of atrophied human bodies and botanical elements. With this work Fillion-Fecteau creates a symbolic space inspired by the cycles of life, speaking to contemplation, meditation, as well as sentiments of anguish and the discomforts of the human experience. Conceived to hang a few inches from the gallery wall, the work echoes the viewer’s body, whose movements in the gallery space modulate the delicate Japanese paper.

Website virginiefillion.com

Charlotte Guirestante Ghomeshi

La vie sensible, 2022 [triptyque] 
Inkjet print on satin paper 
20” x 30" (each)

Le couteau,2019 
L’aquarium, 2022  
Pierre de feu, 2022

Bio

Charlotte Guirestante Ghomeshi is an artist working primarily with photography and video. Based in Montreal since 2012, she obtained a bachelor's degree in photography at Concordia University. Charlotte approaches with empathy themes such as intimacy, the origin of life and the fallibility of the human experience.
Her work has been exhibited at Livart, Archive Contemporary, Galerie VAV, Centre Skol and Caravansérail. She is the recipient of a Research and Creation grant from the Canada Council for the Arts in 2021. Since 2020, she has been leading the Tabloïd project. .

Statement

In this self-portrait, Charlotte uses different symbols to evoke her perception of the relationships between different beings. According to her, all species are interconnected and can communicate and shapeshift into each other. The project is influenced by the teachings of the philosopher Emanuele Coccia: “To be born means to be nothing other than a reconfiguration, a metamorphosis of something else. That is to say, to be nature, means having to build, to build, one's own body from the Earth, from all the matter of the world available from this planet of which we are both the modification and the expression, articulation and fold.” All creatures on Earth are heirs to an ancient lineage, we are ultimately all related to each other.

Website charlotteghomeshi.com

Jacqueline He

Fragments of the Origin, 2021 
Cardboard, golden ink, Chinese ink, wood stick, white canvas,
transparent glue, strong glue, clay, white spray painting, fire 
75 cm x 40 cm 

Eat Herbs, 2022 
Bamboowood board, clay, white painting, tea herbs, Chinese medicine,
tiger balm, paper, ginger, camomile flowers 
45 cm x 45 cm 

Bio

Based in Montreal, Jackie He graduated from the Studio Arts Program at Concordia University. By studying many mediums and through the acquisition of knowledge in her Art History courses, she developed a deep reflection on her own identity. The influences of many sensitive subjects present in society, such as Stop Asian Hate, Black Lives Matter, or even environmental concerns, have provided the inspiration and thoughts behind her work. He also studied social sciences at the St-Laurent Cegep, which, through psychology and sociology class, impact her perspective. The artist is known for her use of mixed-media, surrealist content, and small details. She often prefers to create art that guides people in profound analysis, rather than offering a simple facade.

Statement

These two projects reflect the situation of people born with two cultures that collide with each other. The artist herself, a Chinese person born in Canada, was exposed to the different values between two cultures and the struggle of being accepting by both. Fragments of the Origin includes many elements that represent the conflict inside of individuals born with two ethnicities. The sculpture Eat Herbs was made through the artist’s analysis of many delicate events such as discrimination and racism. It represents the stereotypes and judgments present through her personal development and the impact of cultural appropriation on her culture.

IG @j.he.art_  

Orise Jacques-Durocher

Madeleine part travailler à l’atelier ou rentre à la maison en chantonnant, 2021 
Stoneware, porcelain, crushed recycled ceramic pieces, glaze, plaster, wood 
Dimensions variable

Bio

Orise Jacques-Durocher is a québécoise artist who lives and works in Montreal where she received a BFA from Concordia University (2020). Jacques-Durocher's sculptural practice is motivated by a will to question our understanding of objects and the material world. At the centre of her work, the medium of ceramics is celebrated for its materiality, both trivial and extravagant. Her work has been shown in a variety of group exhibitions in Montreal as well as in Skaelskor, Denmark, during a residency at the Guldagergaard International Ceramic Research Center as part of a summer program from Concordia University.

Statement

Orise Jacques-Durocher's latest installation project Madeleine part travailler à l'atelier ou rentre à la maison en chantonnant initiates the use of a narrative approach, in which the artist envisions characters to whom she attributes the objects she puts in the foreground. The work reveals a familiar, domestic but liberated, discreetly utopian material world where the matter leaves us with uncertainties and reflections. This body of work also marks the beginning of Jacques-Durocher's use of a personal and experimental technique for reusing fired ceramics, in which she finely crushes finished ceramic pieces and incorporates them into the glazes on the surface of her work. This new approach brings attention to the contrasts between the precious and the modest, the delicate and the robust, the heavy and the light. These material explorations underscore the themes that animate the work such as the objectivity and subjectivity of utility, overproduction, the handmade, invisible work and domesticity. 

IG @0rise

Tong Zhou Lafrance

From China, To Canada, 2020-2021 
Photo paper woven with sewing threads, supported with dowels 
9.5” x 32”  
9.5” x 30”

Bio

童宙 Tong Zhou Lafrance is a multidisciplinary artist adopted from China who lives in Tiohtià:ke/Mooniyang (Montreal). In 2021, they obtained a Bachelor of Fine Arts with distinction at Concordia University. Their visual research focuses on the different ways of reuniting both their past and their everyday life through the alteration of family archives and traveling souvenirs. Their work has been shown in Tkaronto(Toronto) at Whippersnapper Gallery (2021), Rad Hourani Foundation Gallery (2021), Eastern Block (2018) and many others. For an indefinite period of time, Tong Zhou's graduate studies at the China Academy of Art (中国美术学院) are entirely remote.

Statement

The original footage for this work was taken in Saskatchewan in 2020. As Tong Zhou had never crossed Canada before, the idea of traveling the entire country was highly appealing to them, and so does the idea of traveling back to their native land. From China, To Canada raises the lack of knowledge about both their native and host country. With humbleness, it also raises the desire to take the time to deconstruct an idealized land in order to thoroughly understand it once reconstructed. Tong Zhou’s photo weavings are inspired by the semiotics of Chinese paintings and Chinese touristic objects. Knowing little about their Chinese heritage, they use the information available to them in Quebec and online to address this issue and make it more accessible to all.

Website tongzhoulafrance.com

IG @tongzhou.lafrance 

Anna Iunes

Tulipán, 2022 
Film-Installation 
Digital, 2-channel video, stereo sound 
14:13

Bio

Anna Iunes is a Brazilian Filmmaker and Visual Artist based in Canada. She has a bachelor's degree in Cinema at the Pontifical Catholic University in Rio de Janeiro and recently finished her MFA in Film Production at the Concordia University with the film-installation Tulipán.


In her practice, Iunes investigates the different perspectives of a narrative and the fragmentation of images. She has worked with different genres, such as documentary with MaracaTU (2015), music video with I see you (2019) and dance-video with es-bar-ro (2020).

Statement

Tulipán deals with the symbolism of a very known flower, and that is not merely by chance. A tulip is one of the few flowers that at some point in its development, has only three petals. However, when it grows, it gives space to more petals to come and blossom together. Three women: three petals – and the possibility of more to come. Two screens to represent the characters that are alive, but the presence of a third personage coming through as in a surrealistic presence. The existence and co-existence of women. Women that collaborate, that are artists, that love each other – all types of love.

Websitesfilmfreeway.com/AnnaIunes | vimeo.com/annaiunes

IG @annaiunes

 

Acknowledgement

In the making of Tulipán, I tried my best to include people of multiple backgrounds. Being a Latina woman, I often find myself as being the only non-white person in a film set and I did not want to perpetuate that in my own practice. It was essential that I made sure that in every step of the production and post-production, people of different identities were part of it. I believe that the only way possible to tell a story where minorities are portrayed is to have a crew that reflects that diversity in the first place. It is with pride that I say that Tulipán had people from 16 different countries: Brazil, Canada, England, France, Haiti, Iran, Italy, Ivory Coast, Malaysia, Mexico, Morocco, Nicaragua, Rwanda, Syria, USA and Vietnam.

José L. Menéndez

Coy Boy, 2022 
ceramic 
13.5” x 8.5” x 9”

Calendar Hand, 2019 
oil on canvas 
18” x 24”

Calendar Boy, 2018 
oil on canvas 
60” x 40"

Bio

José Lara Menéndez was born and raised in Tiohtiá:ke/Montreal in a first-generation Guatemalan and Salvadoran household. Menéndez is a multimedia artist with a whimsical visual language of surrealist scenes and cartoon figures. Through this, the artist explores complex emotions relating to their queer and trans identities. In 2017, they graduated from Dawson College in Visual Arts. In 2022, they obtained their BFA in Painting and Drawing at Concordia University

Statement

Calendar Boy and Calendar Hand address the artist's perception of the structure of time. In these works, the calendars act as traps which the figures cannot escape. For Menéndez, they become symbols of the structure of a capitalist society in which we perform. In Calendar Hand, the palm of the hand faces the viewer but hides behind the distorted fence with numbers. In Calendar Boy, the post-it note speaks about the artist’s expectations regarding their appearance as they socially and medically transition. To writes “no trans person looks the same” is to remember that there is no defined mold or linear path to being trans. Through the figure’s anxious but comical expression and treatment of the body, Menéndez keeps a sense of lightheartedness. Finally, the artist’s latest creation Coy Boy was made during their exploration with ceramics by using their sensibilities and interests from their painting and drawing practice.

IG @tu_patojx

Fiona Nguyen

When They Left, 2021 
Oil on recycled leather 
14” x 17”  
5” x 5” 
 
Birth Defect, 2021 
Oil on canvas 
12” x 10” 
 
Mutation, 2021 
Oil on canvas 
14” x 11” 
 
Rose était la pluie 
Oil on recycled leather 
9” x 13”

 

Bio

Fiona Nguyen is a Canadian painter of Franco-Vietnamese origin. Engaging in the academic tradition of fine arts for more than twelve years, she started an artistic and bilingual education at a young age. She has participated in several group exhibitions including Fun & Flore (2021) at Livart, A Ghoul’s Appetite (2021) at La Centrale Powerhouse, Metamorphosis (2021) at Atelier 2112 Gallery, and Food Nature (2020) at the Rad Hourani Foundation. Now a graduate of Concordia University in Painting and Drawing, the artist continues her research and pictorial practice in Montreal and is preparing her first solo exhibition in Toronto.

Statement

In 1972, the concept of "ecocide" was first introduced by Swedish Prime Minister Olof Palme during a lecture on the environment presented to the United Nations. The socialist statesman opened the discussion by addressing the US’s "ecocide" during the Vietnam War. This terminology describes a criminal act consisting of deliberately destroying and irreparably damaging an ecosystem by an anthropogenic factor. The military operation Ranch Hand, which ran from 1962 to 1971, consisted of spreading Rainbow Herbicides, including the seventy-two million litres of Agent Orange deployed on forests and agricultural lands in Vietnam, contaminating water and the region’s food chain. These paintings articulate a dialogue between the body and the earth, the human and the environment, in the hopes that the audience comprehends the aftermath of chemical war.

IG @fiona_ngc

OK Pedersen

As You Wait For Death To Arrive, the Unnameable Urgency to Sum It All Up (2022)

  1. Three Parables, 2020, 1080p HD video: color, sound, text, 9 mins.

  2. Ongles Venus Nails, 2021, inkjet print, 24” x 36”

  3. Hegelian Sign, 2020, iron, stainless steel, reflective aluminum, 18” x 14” x 20" 

  4. Tree/Gate, 2020, inkjet print, 60” x 75”

  5. Me and my grandma's phone, 2022, inkjet print, wheat paste,

    8” x 10” 

Bio

As a first generation Middle Eastern-American from the Midwestern United States, now living in Tiohtià:ke/Montréal, OK witnesses the world through the kaleidoscopic powers of language––its pendulum of potency and ineptitude. As an image maker, her work circles around modern myth, mainstream media, and collective dreaming, to address the cyclical nature of existence. She is the recipient of the 2019 Lazare Family Graduate Award in Photography and the 2017 AJ Zelina Emerging Young Photographer Award. 

Statement

OK's practice is dedicated to exploring the mediating mechanisms, both visible and invisible, that structure our means of communication and intersubjective exchange. Her work revolves entirely around this question: how to know what is real? How can we know anything for sure, being constantly inundated by privately and publicly funded streams of hollow, empty, splashy, expensive, clickable, narrative noise? How do we navigate these interfaces, and manage to locate each other? These works are about our relationship with reality, and how images fit into and expose the invisible network of connections in which we find ourselves entangled. As Kaja Silverman writes in The Miracle of Analogy (Or the History of Photography Part I): "Two is the smallest unit of being."

Website okpedersen.com 

IG @kristinapicture 

 

Acknowledgements

Thanks to Chih-Chien Wang 

Audrey Rainville

Roots Home, 2021 
Film Animation (stop-motion, 2D, undercamera), 2048/1080 
3:05

Bio

Audrey Rainville is a young artist from Montreal, Canada. Her interests lie mainly in recounting stories and spreading awareness about realities that differ from our own. She approaches documentary work through a sensitive and poetic approach, incorporating enigmatic visual stories and striking interview content. Through her animated work she strives to weave enhanced expressions of her subjects’ and collaborators’ identity. Her focus on textiles anchors those stories in a reality that is sheltered from the outer world and where the viewer is invited to discover this reality alongside her.  


In her practice, Iunes investigates the different perspectives of a narrative and the fragmentation of images. She has worked with different genres, such as documentary with MaracaTU (2015), music video with I see you (2019) and dance-video with es-bar-ro (2020).

Statement

Roots Home is an interview-based documentary exploring Indigenous identity and relationship to the land. In it, the lines of the interviewee are intertwined with a poetic and touching visual story, intricately woven into one another. Roots Home won the prize for best student film at the Festival du Nouveau Cinéma.

IG @Odrypluie


Acknowledgements

Thanks to Miriam Diana Pelletier for your collaboration and voice

Etta Sandry

Pathways through unknowing, 2021 
Handwoven cotton and wool, stoneware,
with plywood and spruce table
72” x 36” x 44”

Photo credit: Brandon Brookbank

Bio

Etta Sandry is an artist, educator, and facilitator from the midwestern United States, currently based in Tiohtià:ke/Montreal. Her material-focused research is rooted in fibre and weaving and spans media through sculpture, writing, and installation. Etta completed her MFA in the Fibre & Material Practices program at Concordia University in the spring of 2021. She has exhibited her work in the United States and Canada and was the 2022 Experimental Weaver in Residence at the Unstable Design Lab in Boulder, Colorado.

 

Statement

Pathways through unknowing offers a series of multi-layer weave samples that explore the potentials of form and structure within a four-layer cloth. Woven layers stack on top of each other to create colorful tubes, pockets, and openings. The samples are displayed on a pegboard-like play table, supported by ceramic posts and arches. With these supports, the weavings stand, drape, fold, open, and twist in space. They can be arranged and rearranged within the table’s field of play. These samples emerge from research into the conceptual implications of something that is materially both binary and multiplicitous. Woven in multiple layers, weaving maintains its inherent binary nature but takes on a new physical dimensionality; from within this seemingly fixed structure, endless possibilities emerge. With their layers, pockets, and folds, the resulting weavings reject the false promise of binary thinking and offer new models of agency and relation.

Website ettasandry.com 

IG @ee_teetee_ay

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