Transition, Transform: Candice Davies, Lois Schklar, J. Eric Simpson

Transition, Transform
Candice Davies, Lois Schklar, J. Eric Simpson

April 7 – May 12, 2018
Opening Reception: April 7 from 2:00-4:00 pm

Transition, Transform challenges concepts of value in late capitalist, Western culture. Artists Candice Davies, Lois Schklar and J. Eric Simpson emphasize items that are often considered ancillary in everyday life such as plastic bags, knickknacks and wall fixtures, acknowledging the historical privilege of artists and art institutions in assigning value on any object or material. Davies makes subtle interventions into the infrastructure of the gallery. She alters the space by replacing ordinary plastic fixtures with carved alabaster replicas that may easily go unnoticed in other contexts. Schklar presents a precise grid of tiny collected trinkets. While each item has a personal meaning for the artist, she subverts the notion of authorship by inviting viewers to contribute to and transform her collection. Simpson likens the allure of convenience-based consumer culture to the trade-off of pain for pleasure involved in sadomasochist practices. He questions the significance of the artist’s hand in creation by readily sharing a how-to video that details his production process for others to use. Works by Davies, Schklar and Simpson explore the ways cultural importance gets assigned to objects and ideas, highlighting how value is subjective and often context-dependent.

The exhibition is accompanied by a critical essay by Emily Hamel, which can be downloaded HERE.

Candice Davies holds a BFA from York University, Ontario and a MFA from Concordia University, Quebec. Currently a faculty member at Toronto School of Art teaching Contemporary Drawing, Candice has attended national and international artist residencies and received numerous awards including The Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada Grant for her Master’s Degree research. Her work has been shown in numerous solo and group exhibitions throughout Canada, namely at The Leonard & Bina Ellen Gallery, Parisian Laundry, CIRCA, Modern Fuel Artist-Run Centre and an upcoming solo exhibitions at la Centrale Gallerie Powerhouse, POPOP Gallery and TRUCK Contemporary Art.

Lois Schklar’s work has been shown in exhibitions throughout Canada and the United States. Her burlap sculptures are in the Bronfman Collection, Claridge Investments, Idea Exchange Art Gallery and The Key Corporation.

She has received grants from the Toronto Arts Council, Canada Council and Ontario Arts Council. Thirty Years of Dolls (2011) was a retrospective exhibition created with the assistance of a Craft Ontario award and an OAC Exhibition Assistance Grant. In 2013, she was awarded an OAC Multi/Integrated Arts Project Grant for Collected Memories, a drawing installation with a professional dancer, musician and lighting designer.

Lois is an educator, facilitator, keynote speaker and curator. In 1997, she curated Dolls: Reclaimed at the Ontario Crafts Council and in 2008 she organized the exhibition, Drawing On at *new* gallery in Toronto. Lois received an OAC Visual Artist Project Grant for Research and Development for The Art of Packing (2014).

Currently Lois is a member of Red Head Gallery at 401 Richmond in Toronto.

Since 2013 J. Eric Simpson has staged six solo exhibitions where he cross-pollinates his interests in Christianity and consumerism. He has participated in a range of group shows including Co-Modify with artist Mizin Shin at Indigo Gallery (2017), Hallwall’s, Amid/In WNY Epilogue, (2017), The Measure of All Things (2016) at The University at Buffalo and the Landarts of the American West field research program and exhibition, facilitated by architect Chris Taylor (2014-5). He is collected by the Beinecke Rare Book & Manuscript Library at Yale University and Baylor University Libraries and is a recent recipient of the Mark Diamond Research Fellowship (2016).

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