As It Is @ Wil Aballe Art Projects, Vancouver
I haven’t made it there yet, but I’m looking forward to checking out the latest show at Wil Aballe Art Projects called As It Is which includes work by an impressive emerging group of artists: Jeremy Hof, Vanessa Maltese, Deirdre McAdams, Sean Mills, Jonathan Syme and Angela Teng. I’m certainly familiar with Hof’s labour intensive creations which are the result of built up layers of paint, which are then sanded off to reveal what has come before, and McAdams’ tightly controlled but visually vibrant abstractions, but there are some less familiar names on the roster whose works deserve a look in person. Both Hof and McAdams have been acknowledged by the prestigious RBC Painting Competition (he was the 2008 winner and she a 2011 semi-finalist) and to this group, Aballe has added work by Vanessa Maltese, a Toronto-based painter whose reductive paintings recall the refined work of Turner-prize winning painter Tomma Abts. She’s also included abstracted sculpture that seems very much a three-dimensional translation of her painting (and in dialogue with the work of Nairy Baghramian for those of you who saw her show at the CAG last year). I’m also curious to see Angela Teng’s crocheted piece which is mounted on the wall just like an abstract painting. I like the way Aballe has summed up the show on his website stating that the each artist works to “distill their visual vocabulary as a means of conveying an essential experience”, pointing to both the artist’s commitment to process and a commitment to refining their efforts.
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