SPECULOOS (Search for Planets Eclipsing Ultra-cOOl Stars)
Brett Bonk / Eva Cournoyer / Megan Fen / Taylor Harder / Kerry Maguire
Curated by Ashley Scarlett and Justin Waddell
Exhibition: March 11 - April 29, 2017
Opening: March 10, 7pm
Earlier this year, NASA announced the discovery of TRAPPIST-1, a potentially habitable system of planets orbiting an ultra-cool dwarf star just 40 light years from Earth. In an age of relentless environmental assault, mass deterritorialization, and impending catastrophe, such discoveries offer both a potential escape hatch and the amnesiac promise of a future departure. Disconcertingly, much of the cultural rhetoric initiated by the appearance of new planetary realities echoes the historical terms of colonization and capitalization, threatening a repetition of the exact conditions under which mass departure has become such an appealing option. This realization calls attention to a growing general need for new methodological approaches that are better equipped to respond to emergent realities and the alternative ways of knowing that they might offer.
The works presented in SPECULOOS materialize an intersectional constellation of weird, counterfactual, and preternatural methodologies for discordant speculation. Less a question of futurity than one of alternative epistemologies, each of the contributing artists positions creative practice as a means of imagining and in turn investigating the other-worldly, whether distant or imperceptibly near. Standing in relation to one another, their works operate as trace effects—investigatory indexes that gesture toward speculative ways of knowing and being through aesthetic experimentation. It is precisely the kind of methodological, epistemological, and aesthetic reorientation materialized across this exhibition that is required to counter the historically entrenched practices that have made planetary exodus a desirable option within the contemporary context.
UAS +15 Window: December 8 – January 30
Opening Reception: January 26, 6 PM – 7PM
Followed by drinks at The Palomino (109 7 Ave SW)
Guests of UAS receive a 15% discount on food and drinks.
Language brings with it the sense of belonging and memory; it is what surrounds us in our thoughts, and in our interactions with our loved ones. Here, language is the place of return, the warm fabric of a memory, and the insisting call from a faraway home. But, here also, there, and everywhere, language is the place of change, an ever shifting ground.
About the artist:
As an Iranian woman artist, moving to Calgary has altered many aspects of my life. As I try to find my place in a society that is far from the religious and political limitation and boundaries of my past life in Tehran, the use of technology and social media has held me strongly tethered to my homeland and past self. Thanks to the Internet, my life in Calgary has become a mixture of distant places and times, rather than a fresh start. The thread that keeps me connected to my hometown lives not only by my memories, but also by the photos and videos that my family send to me frequently, and my close friends’ social media activities. I am continuously going back and forth between places and moments, this gives me the feeling of being suspended between two utterly different worlds; I refer to this sensation as “simultaneity”. It is like I am living in several moments and places at the same time.
In my artistic research process, I constantly raise questions like: How can I envision the sentiment of wavering between two simultaneous realities? How can I express the consequences of being ‘present’ in two separate cultures at once? How can I embody the swings in multiple added layers and fragments of my identity and their relation to place? And how can I address the notion of searching for the perception of belonging, which I am undergoing living and being inbetween?
Tyler Los Jones, as lichens #6, 2016. Image courtesy the artist
Untitled Art Society is so pleased to invite you to our Annual Fundraiser, 50 // 50. Join us on December 1st for drinks and a silent auction at our main exhibition space (343 11th Ave. SW). Event from 7 - 10 pm with silent auction from 7 - 9 pm.
50 // 50 features artwork generously donated by many talented artists in support of UAS exhibition and education programming. Revenue earned from the sale of work in the silent auction is split between the artist and UAS, with 50% going directly to the artist and the other 50% going towards supporting future public programming at UAS. Drinks generously donated by our favourite Big Rock Brewery and snacks from the always wonderful Sidewalk Citizen Bakery.
Tyler Los Jones
Peter von Tiesenhausen
Nicole Kelly Westman and Del Hillier
Exhibition: October 8 – November 30, 2016
Reception: Thursday November 17, 2016, 6- 7 pm
Casa Lethbridge: Saturday October 1, 2016
Part of the M:ST Performative Art Festival, CSIF - The Calgary Society of Independent Filmmakers and Untitled Art Society are excited to present Jessie Short's Wake Up! at UAS's +15 Window at Arts Commons and at Casa in Lethbridge.
Artist Jessie Short, employs a self-reflexive and interdisciplinary practice to best explore constructs of Métis identity and contemporary visual culture. Produced as part of the 2015 ImagineNATIVE/CSIF Mentorship program, Wake Up! is an exploration of her identity as a Métis woman. The work addresses the absence of Métis people from larger conversations about Indigenous visual culture. For the film, Short transforms herself into the one of the only widely acknowledged icons and source of Métis identity accessible to her, Louis Riel. This transformation further suggests the disparate histories between Métis men and women.
Short will also be performing We've, a durational performance piece, on October 25th as part of the M:ST Festival: http://mstfestival.org/performance/jessieshort2/
For more information and full schedule for M:ST visit www.mstfestival.org - See more at: http://www.uascalgary.org/15-window.html#sthash.QEykfBmC.dpuf
Exhibition: September 9th - November 26th, 2016
Reception: Friday, September 9th, 2016, 8 pm
Artist Talk & Lunch: Saturday, September 10th, 2016, 2 pm
Publication Launch: Friday, November 4th, 2016, 8 pm
I’ve made a decision to look at you.
Even though my lids cover my gaze, it is still pointed, at you.
It’s hot inside the spheres in my head, though not as hot as the hot that is you.
The only one.
No, we know.
But we don’t know the other ones, not in the way we know you.
You keep pulling us back, spinning us around, holding us in place in space, with a gentle allowance to dip on an angle.
So we take this.
So small a gesture for you.
For us, entire forests respond in gratitude with the changing colours and shedding of their leaves.
To fall back down, and be breathed up again, by you.
Shea butter comes from the hand of other women, or so I have read. I tell myself we can touch through this material.
Can I feel you through this?
She can’t feel my touch and neither can they.
I try to wipe the butter away by spreading it onto every part of myself until it no longer creates a barrier between my hands and the things they hold.
I consume and absorb it until it disappears.
Do I feel soft?
we are connected and we are completely apart
I feel myself trying to keep up with the speed of these things.
slow but endless
like packages enroute to their stopping place.
My preferences, your desires, our similarities
The things that repel us are also the things we don’t understand
Coincidences have a slippery shape. The magic of coincidence is that, because we don’t wait for them to present themselves, we get to be arrested by their existence.
you told us to imagine shea butter holding glass bricks together—like mortar
we didn’t know the size of the room, so we cut things to fit once we arrived.
you can’t transplant morning glories—we tried—but their roots are too fragile.
we fell asleep talking about cabbage and light, barely moved.
Zoë Wonfor is a curator living in Montreal. Wonfor completed her studies in art history and studio art at Concordia University in 2015. She has since been doing ceramics and curating, with Lauren Chipeur, at The Valley, an experimental exhibition space in Montreal. She is interested in coincidences.
Lauren Chipeur is a sculpture and installation artist based in Montreal. She is currently an MFA candidate at Concordia University. Her practice is concerned with the systems formed to care for material as it moves, shifts and transforms both in transit and in the moments in which it rests.
April Martin is a sculptor currently based in Chicago. She recently obtained an MFA from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2016. Her work embraces the scale of shared living, breathing, heating, melting. She explores stain, colour, porous boundaries and perpetual soaking through materials such as plaster, porcelain, fabric and metal.
In conjunction with the exhibition, Lauren Chipeur, April Martin, Lara Schoorl and Zoë Wonfor are pleased to present their publication, The end of may.
Exhibition: August 8th – September 30th, 2016
Reception: Thursday September 15th, 2016, 6 - 7 pm
In the +15 Window
Using both assemblage and improvised dissection, Unhinged subverts the physical objects of the Barbie doll and female mannequin, humorously playing with gender stereotypes and expectations, female shame, and the ironies of female experience. Through juxtaposition and metaphorical innuendo, mannequin limbs and Barbie doll parts work to counter the objectification of women, and the dismantling and disfiguring of the ever present and iconic Barbie doll form becomes psychologically and socially therapeutic.
About the Artist:
Emily Lendl is an emerging artist based in Calgary, Alberta. She is currently completing her fourth year of her BFA at the Alberta College of Art + Design. Consisting of the collection and assemblage of various incongruent combinations of found objects and materials, her work creates strange spaces and anthropomorphic forms. Working within the tradition of figurative sculpture and surrealism, Lendl unapologetically challenges traditional notions of sexuality, gender roles, and body image.
Exhibition : June 8th- July 31st
Reception: July 21st, 2016 6 - 7 pm
In the +15 Window
Screen: a floor; a window;
a wall / resistance or
feedback. Possible refusal:
of dualistic images of a Self 1
putting the Foot down.
...and this desire to be a part of,
but apart from something other
surrounds the way you see (you
can’t get in). Pressure
or flattens – how porous will you be?
Calgary born artist Graham Macaulay received a BFA from the University of Victoria in 2014, and has continued to live and work primarily in Victoria BC. He assembles structures that speak to each other, around domesticity and sentimentality, through the compulsion to realize connections. Macaulay has recently presented work with Xchanges Gallery, the Ministry of Casual Living, and Stride Gallery.
Exhibition: April 22 – July 2, 2016
Reception: Friday, April 22, 2016, 8PM
A collaboration between Calgary-based artist Nicole Kelly Westman and Vancouver-based artist Del Hillier, Presenting Two Left-Footed Loocee and Delvis Cache unites the characters of Two Left Footed Loocee and Delvis Cache for a performative and sculptural installation that bridges the multifarious contexts of contemporary art with personal narrative, as the artists explore their shared experiences of growing up in blue collar mining families through performance. Drawing from the politics and peculiarities of both the mining industry and art institutions, Presenting Two Left-Footed Loocee and Delvis Cache offers a satirical and humorous inquiry into hierarchies of labour and the quirks of the art world, with catchy tunes to boot.
Along with the exhibition, the artists will present a series of public programs and performances including the launch of a cassette publication in partnership with Sled Island Music & Arts Festival entitled Live From UAS, Delvis and Loucey, with text by Sophia Bartholomew.
About the Artists:
Nicole Kelly Westman is a visual artist of Métis and Icelandic descent. She grew up in a supportive home with strong-willed parents—her mother, a considerate woman with inventive creativity, and her father, an anonymous feminist. Her work culls from these formative years for insight and inspiration. Creating work that exists beyond the binaries of a specific medium, Westman finds inspiration through the plumbing of archives and through deep research. She has had the pleasure and privilege to be curated into exhibitions by remarkable females including: Ginger Carlson, Kimberly Phillips, Peta Rake, Kristy Trinier, and cheyanne turions. Westman holds a BFA from Emily Carr University and is the current Director of Stride Gallery, Calgary.
Del Hillier’s work oscillates between an indoor and outdoor studio where self-learning, experimentation, serendipity, and happenstance are safely at play. Working across sculpture, performance, video, social engagement, acting, and craft, Hillier considers both the aesthetic experience of making work and the work itself of equal importance. These circumstances allow his own idiosyncratic interests to wander and build unique and novel responses to familiar objects and experiences.
Exhibition: March 8, 2016 - May 31, 2016
Reception: Thursday March 19, 2016, 6PM - 7PM
In the UAS +15 Window
Through the use of appropriative text, video, and objects, MOTIVATION/MOVEMENT reveals an abstract investigation into socio-economic patterns of capital. An homage to the work of French philosophers Gilles Deleuze and Félix Guattari, MOTIVATION/MOVEMENT gives physical form to philosophical thought, animating The Body Without Organs and the Desiring Machines of the human unconscious.
“Society constructs its own delirium by recording the process of production; but it is not a conscious delirium, or rather is a true consciousness of a false movement, a true perception of an apparent objective movement, a true perception of the movement that is produced on the recording surface. Capital is indeed the body without organs of the capitalist, or rather of the capitalist being. But as such, it is not only the fluid and petrified substance of money, for it will give to the sterility of money the form whereby money produces money. It produces surplus value, just as the body without organs reproduces itself, puts forth shoots, and branches out to the farthest corners of the universe. It makes the machine responsible for producing a relative surplus value, while embodying itself in the machine as fixed capital”. (Deleuze, Guattari pg. 10)
Deleuze, Gilles, and Félix Guattari. Anti-Oedipus: Capitalism and Schizophrenia. Minneapolis: U of Minnesota, 1983. Web.
About the Artist:
Brian Wennerstrom is a recent graduate of Emily Carr University of Art and Design in Vancouver, Canada. He has participated in group shows in Vancouver and Calgary and is currently an employee at TRUCK Contemporary Art in Calgary.