Excessive Abundance: The Lives of Still Lifes

Excessive Abundance: The Lives of Still Lifes
Ian McMurrich, Amanda Nedham and Maureen Paxton

August 31 – October 28

Opening Reception: August 31, 7:00 – 9:30 pm

Featuring the work of Ian McMurrich, Amanda Nedham and Maureen Paxton, Excessive Abundance: The Lives of Still Lifes probes us to question the hidden life of objects. What they say in juxtaposition to one another. What they say about us as their collectors—reflections on our innate desire to project romanticized representations of the self through the objects we choose to surround ourselves with. Or, as evidenced through each of the works on display, what is projected through their absence or re-emergence—what happens when we choose to divest ourselves of these often mass produced, yet carefully collected, representations of self? How does their meaning and assigned value evolve as they inevitably change hands or are discarded and thrown away? Through photography, painting and textile, McMurrich, Paxton, and Nedham each draw from these discarded objects—by-products of consumerist insatiability—and re-contextualize them resulting in divergent, yet connected narratives. The excessive abundance of these things, objects, and items—their mass production and proliferation—make them ripe for experimentation and intervention, while at the same time cautioning the viewer to consider the critical implications of these objects proliferation and accessibility.

This exhibition will be accompanied by a critical essay by Kristina Durka.

Ian McMurrich is a multidisciplinary artist employing sculpture, photography, and time-based media in a practice that is based upon walking. He received his MFA from the University of Waterloo in 2014 and his BFA from OCAD University in 2006. He has exhibited at the University of Waterloo Art Gallery and been included as part of group exhibitions at both Toronto’s LE Gallery and Montreal’s Art Mûr. He is the recipient of several grants and awards including Ontario Arts Council Emerging Artist and Exhibition Assistance grants and a Best Portrait Photography Award from the Toronto Outdoor Art Exhibition. During the summer of 2013 he worked with film and video artist Melanie Manchot in London, England. His work is held in various private collections. He currently lives and works in Hamilton, Ontario.

Ian McMurrich would like to recognize the generous support of the Ontario Arts Council’s Exhibition Assistance program and the Visual Artists: Emerging grant program

Amanda Nedham completed her BFA at OCAD University in Printmaking and her MFA at RISD in Painting. She currently works and lives in New York City. Her studio practice is interdisciplinary with an emphasis on drawing and installation. Her most recent work focuses on the idea of prememorial, the act of creating anticipatory monuments that carve out a space for the living and the future dead. Recent exhibitions include Frida Smoked at Invisible-Exports in New York City, My Boyfriend is a Peacekeeper at Putty’s Coronation in New York City,Q: Are you an undertaker? A: No Q: Are you a service provider? A: Yes at LE Gallery in Toronto, Extract IV Young Art Prize in Copenhagen, and Hello Future Talents Archive Project in Athens. Amanda has received grants from the Ontario Arts Council, the Toronto Arts Council, and in 2015 was awarded a position in ARTHA’s one year studio residency program in Brooklyn, New York.

Maureen Paxton is a painter and drawer who moved from Toronto to Hamilton in 2008. She has taught at OCA (now OCADU), at Sheridan College (Animation and Art Fundamentals faculties), as well as at the ROM.   Besides fine art, she has worked as an illustrator, an animation background painter, a teacher, a theatre designer/painter, a writer. She was recently awarded a Hamilton Enrichment Fund grant as well as earlier grants from the OAC and Canada Council. She has been shortlisted for the Governor General’s Medal for Illustration. She was also a member of the Tarragon Theatre Playwrights Unit. The last two years have been focused on producing a series of paintings using thrift store objects. A pending series of paintings, supported by Hamilton City Council, will use architectural elements found within the Beasley neighbourhood.

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