Thursday, June 12, 2014

Petra Halkes: Lights On!

My review of "Lights On!" at the Cube Gallery in Ottawa from 2 - 26 January 2014 is on newsstands this summer, appearing in issue 130 of Border Crossings. An exhibition by the Ottawa-based artist, writer, and curator Petra Halkes, “Lights On!” was comprised of recent oil paintings that reproduce the aesthetic qualities of hasty snapshot photography in order to defamiliarize everyday scenes and make them seem otherworldly. Curated by Marcia Lea, the exhibition included selections from two related bodies of Halke’s work, her Window Shopping series and her Reflections series. In both series, Halkes refers to source photographs in the production of her paintings, and she plays up the accidental effects of the lens-based imagery in them, underscoring the disproportionate time and materiality of their making. Halkes confounds the traditional conception of a painting as a window onto the world by superimposing the perspectival planes of more recent technological developments, multiplying windows to other possible worlds.

For the complete review, check out Border Crossings 130, available at the finest bookstores, newsstands, and libraries near you.

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