unmaking/making 2010

barber’s chair, foam, upholstery felt, wood, vinyl, tacks, wood, plaster, steel, plastic
5 x 29 ft
Installed at Gallery 1918, Toronto and Gallery 101, Ottawa (images from studio install)

unmaking/making questions the labour of making memory. How does one reproduce something so that the old thing (that is falling apart, eventually disappearing) will be remembered? And what happens when the task is to recreate (as closely as possible, with the means at one’s disposal) the thing one needs to remember, with some knowledge of the past but one that is incomplete, with a knowledge and an understanding that can never be complete because what needs to be remembered has always already passed?  In many ways, trying to create a close approximation of the thing (in this place and time) by mimesis, the attempt to bridge by similarities, ultimately points to differences. This is both a failure and a relief. It is a failure because the thing cannot be reproduced and remade to be what it is now, after it has gone through so much, or to be what it was then, because so much remains unknown. It is a relief (and a revelation) because the past does not need to be remade. But reconsidering the past through the labour of making allows discoveries to emerge: new materials, new ways of making, and new solutions.