Please join us at Diaz Contemporary on Saturday 17 August from 3 to 5 pm for the launch of Zeke Moores' new catalogue,Dispose.
The catalogue, published by the Art Gallery of Windsor and The Rooms Provincial Art Gallery, features essays by Bruce Johnson, Srimoyee Mitra, and Ray Cronin, and is published in conjunction with exhibitions in both galleries.
Arts Council Windsor & Region (ACWR), Broken City Lab (BCL) and The City of Windsor are pleased to announce the launch of Neighbourhood Spaces: Windsor & Region Artist in Residence Program, a new initiative that will locate ten chosen Canadian artists in community sites throughout Windsor and Essex County in Ontario, for 4-6-week artist residences. Supported by the Ontario Trillium Foundation, this new program will allow artists to work in non-traditional spaces in non-traditional ways, by embedding artists in community sites such as parks, factories, libraries, community gardens, health, youth, heritage or community centres. These sites will provide a “home base” for each artist to work with and in the community to discover, explore and respond to the stories, triumphs and challenges of the community.
The NS Program kicks off JULY 15, 2013 with Lisa Lipton and will be staggered over the next year, concluding in August 2014. A final exhibition and symposium will be held in the fall of 2014 and an online publication will be created documenting the program.
Windsor-based visual artist Zeke Moores uses sculpture to explore the social and political economies of everyday objects and our complex relationship with them. As part of the Visual Arts Spring Exhibitions, Zeke joins seven artists whose works comment on consumerism, social mores and the dialogue between the functional, decorative and art object.
Within the exhibition, entitled RE: POSITION, Zeke is displaying a collection of 30, cast aluminum axes placed in a strategic composition, creating an interesting play with lighting/shadows. As well, he’s displaying a solid bronze construction barrier. We were lucky enough to catch up with Zeke during his set up. He explained to us the concept behind his work, why he chose axes and more. We also give you (the viewers) a glimpse into how Zeke gets the axes into wall.
Zeke Moores won’t complain if you give one of his boxes the boot as long as you don’t sue him for personal injury.
Artist Zeke Moores polishes his fabricated steel porta-john, part of his exhibit at Art Gallery of Windsor. (NICK BRANCACCIO / The Windsor Star)
Those empty beer cases and tomato paste cartons that appear to spray-painted refugees of a dump are actually bronze sculptures.
The Windsor sculptor’s fascinating copies of actual everyday items are part of a new exhibit that focuses on the art of the commonplace.
Besides Moores’ show titled simply Dispose, the Art Gallery of Windsor is hosting a solo exhibit by Toronto’s Hajra Waheed titled Field Notes and Other Backstories.
Her collection of hand-copied passport photos from Lebanon are carefully crafted works of art. She has also compiled collages of newspaper clippings, photos, and vintage postcards in scrapbooks she discovered in garbage bins.
Another part of Waheed’s show is a series of brief films shown on small viewers.
But the passport images are the most intriguing parts of the exhibit.
Artist Hajra Waheed stands inside the Art Gallery of Windsor with her exhibit consisting of passport photos. (NICK BRANCACCIO / The Windsor Star)
There are 198 images — 99 women and 99 men — drawn from thousands of photos taken by the Armenian-born Antranik Anouchian in Tripoli, Lebanon from the 1930s to the 1990s.
Today, the originals are housed in the Arab Image Foundation in Beirut and document a time of upheaval and change in the Middle East.
Passport photos were the only public images allowed when Waheed was growing up amidst tight security on the Saudi Aramco compound in Saudi Arabia. Her father worked there as a geologist.
“Every year I would go to the passport office to have my picture taken,” said Waheed, 32, who was born in Canada but moved to the Middle East at a young age. “Those photos were distributed by my parents to relatives as a document of me growing up.”
The fact of identity and the legal nature of the passport photo intrigued her.
“A passport is significant on many levels. It not only identifies a person, it also defines one’s notion of freedom of movement, whether one is allowed to cross borders. It has always had a quite profound influence on me.”
If you look at the images from a distance, they appear to be blurry black and white photographs or lithographs. Only when you look closely do you discover Waheed has actually copied the photos by hand, right down to the weave of the paper.
It was a painstaking process in which she acted as “a human printer.”
The mute, nondescript and unidentified people stare out from across nearly a century, allowing the viewer to imagine their stories, Waheed said.
“They could be anybody’s parents or grandparents,” she said. “We begin to ask ourselves what characterizes people of a certain region in our minds, and how and why we tend to superimpose our own ideas about them.”
Moores, meanwhile, challenges our ideas of what is disposable in a collection of extremely realistic sculptures in aluminum, bronze and steel.
A tree stump made of bronze is topped by aluminum castings in the shape of satellite dishes. A 500-pound steel portable toilet commands the view at one end of the gallery. The floor is strewn with bronze boxes and a moving blanket that looks like it could use a good shaking, except for the fact it’s made of aluminum.
“I get comments all the time like ‘What’s the big deal? My kid could spray-paint a box’,” said Moores, 35.
“One of the things I try to convey is that some of the objects we overlook and discard were actually manufactured and required time and technology to produce.
“It’s about trying to understand the world around us through the everyday objects that surround us.”
The Walkerville resident regularly takes walks down Ouellette Avenue and along alleyways for inspiration.
“One of my favourite things to do is to walk downtown on a Sunday morning after the kids are done their partying on Saturday nights,” Moores said. “It’s an interesting sight.”
The aluminum blanket, he said, took six months to finish and involved three separate molds which were welded together. During the molding process, he used dental instruments to add the finer details and texture to the object.
A single beer case can require as much as 60 hours of detailing and grinding after it comes out of the mold.
“I don’t mind if people want to kick or nudge the work to see if it’s real,” he said. “The gallery gets a little annoyed, though.”
The two exhibits opened Friday and continue through June 2. A panel discussion with the artists, titled Lost and Found, will take place today at 2 p.m. Admission is free.
The Art Gallery of Windsor is located at 401 Riverside Dr. W. Go to agw.ca for hours of operation and other information.
Zeke Moores: Dispose
April 19 – June 2, 2013
Zeke Moores' sculptures draw inspiration from everyday life. He modifies and manipulates objects in unexpected and surprising ways. Through a nuanced play with material, weight, size and perception Moores invites viewers to assess the values which govern the aesthetics of mass production and consumer culture. This exhibition brings together a body of work, which explore and elucidate the transient nature of contemporary society in the 21st century. From the movement of commodities from one place to another to the complex patterns of migration as more and more people leave their hometowns for work and better opportunities and mobility is deeply linked to the structure of our globalized economies. Similarly, the exhibition echoes the constant state of transition in our material culture through ordinary cardboard boxes, wooden crates, milk crates and a moving blanket, all commonly used apparatus for carrying and protecting goods and personal belongings. Considered efficient and useful while in use, once these mundane objects have served their purpose they are usually discarded and left to join the accruing detritus of our unsustainable consumer culture. Moores reclaims these objects as cultural artifacts of our time and recreates them in bronze and aluminum to highlight the beauty and potential in their conceptualization. Honouring the labour of factory workers who spend hours on the assembly line, Moores develops each work by hand. Drawing on his extensive knowledge and skills in foundry production and fabrication, these objects signify the dignity and merit if these labour-intensive processes. Moores himself moved from Newfoundland where he was born and raised to Halifax, Nova Scotia, for university at the age of 21. Since then he has lived in New Jersey, Toronto and Windsor, where he continues to live and work.
Organized in partnership by The Art Gallery of Windsor and The Rooms Corporation of Newfoundland and Labrador with support of Ontario Arts Council and the Canada Council for the Arts
For more information about Zeke Moores, visit http://www.zekemoores.typepad.com/
Zeke Moores: Dispose has been chosen as one of Canadian Art's Top Picks: April 18 to 24, 2013:http://www.canadianart.ca/openings/2013/04/18/openings-wreck-city/
Curated by Srimoyee Mitra, Bruce Johnson
Photo Credit: Frank Piccolo
As new as it gets!
So the Moving Blanket is finaly done. It took long enough but I'm happy with how it turned out. Cast In three parts and welded together with a whole lot of chasing. Its seven feet long and about 150 lbs. It was a bitch!
7' x 3' x 5"