October 11, 2016 - The Power Plant - Fall 2016 exhibition season
October 11, 2016

The Power Plant

Left: Yto Barrada, Untitled (painted educational boards found in Natural History Museum, abandoned construction site, Azilal, Morocco; fig. 3), 2013–15. Right: Yto Barrada, Untitled (painted educational boards found in Natural History Museum, abandoned construction site, Azilal, Morocco; fig. 5), 2013–15.*

Fall 2016 exhibition season
Yto Barrada, Latifa Echakhch, Maria Loboda
October 15, 2016–January 2, 2017

Opening party: October 14, 8–11pm

The Power Plant
231 Queens Quay West
Toronto Ontario M5J 2G8
Canada
Hours: Tuesday–Wednesday 10am–5pm,
Thursday 10am–8pm,
Friday–Sunday 10am–6pm

T +1 416 973 4949
F +1 416 973 4933
info@thepowerplant.org

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The Power Plant presents three major solo exhibitions by artists Yto Barrada, Latifa Echakhch and Maria Loboda for its Fall 2016 exhibition season, on view from October 15, 2016 to January 2, 2017. 

Yto Barrada: Faux Guide
Curator: Carolin Köchling, Curator of Exhibitions, The Power Plant

Yto Barrada’s solo exhibition at The Power Plant continues the artist’s recent work around fossil evidence, paleontology, museology and natural history in Morocco. At the centre of the exhibition is Faux départ (2015), a film that pays homage to the fossil "preparators" in the arid region between the Atlas Mountains and the Sahara Desert, whose intrepid work is fuelling a thriving trade in artifacts real, faux and hybrid. A rebuke to the fetishistic thirst for foreign objects, Faux départ is a sly meditation on authenticity and a paean to creativity. The exhibition presents a comprehensive selection of works from Barrada’s new series Faux Guide, including photographs of children’s toys from North Africa, "Untitled (North African Toys Series)" (2015), which are part of the collection of the Musée du quai Branly in Paris, assembled by French ethnographers in the 1930s.

Structured like a personal museum, Barrada takes viewers through these artifacts, real and fake, to consider the act of collecting as a means of crafting national narratives. These conceptual strategies are also dealt with in Geological Time Scale (2015), a collection of Berber carpets that point to our shared roots in Pangaea, and A Guide to Trees for Governors and Gardeners (2014), a film that explores a fictionalized, Potemkin image of urban life.

Faux Guide is accompanied by the artist’s book A Guide to Fossils For Forgers and Foreigners, available in three languages and published by Walther König, Cologne and co-produced by Museu de Arte Contemporânea, Porto; Carré d'art – Musée d'art contemporain, Nîmes; and The Power Plant Contemporary Art Gallery, Toronto.

Latifa Echakhch: Cross Fade
Curator: Carolin Köchling, Curator of Exhibitions, The Power Plant

Developed for the second iteration of the Fleck Clerestory Commission Program in a space characterized by its openness in all directions—to the sky, Toronto's waterfront and the surrounding galleries—Latifa Echakhch’s work Cross Fade confronts viewers with a sky that is literally falling. Fragments of the sky still exist intact but out of reach on the upper walls, though large parts lie on the ground, in ruin. The technique used in the installation references the classical fresco, a second skin that usually leads viewers into another painted world. Here, however, Echakhch shatters this illusion, rooting viewers in the present which, like a cross fade, is caught between the past and the future.

The sky has previously appeared in Echakhch’s work La dépossession (2014), printed across a collapsing theatre canvas and suspended from the ceiling, as a motif to deconstruct the spectacle and intrigue of the theatre. For her installation at The Power Plant, Echakhch gives the sky material form. Rendered in cement on the walls, it is no longer just a motif but also an object, capable of being destroyed. Here, an element we usually associate with permanence loses its stability, taking on a state of a ruin that underscores the uncertainty of the present and speaks to the loss of a common space. Echakhch’s work navigates poetics and politics as well as transcendental and actual space, referencing historical and social issues by pointing to the material’s original function and symbolic meaning. Having exhibited extensively in museums and exhibitions worldwide, Cross Fade is the first presentation of Echakhch’s work in Canada.

Maria Loboda: Some weep, some blow flutes
Curator: Clara Halpern, 2014–16 RBC Curatorial Fellow, The Power Plant

Some weep, some blow flutes, Maria Loboda’s first solo exhibition in Canada, presents an installation of recent and newly commissioned works that emerge from the artist’s ongoing research on archaeology, healing processes, anthropomorphism and the predynastic era.

The title of the exhibition is a reference to the influential Confucian and Taoist philosophical text by Laozi, Tao Te Ching, the poetic structure of which has elicited many interpretations, beginning from the perspective that a defined path is not the enduring way forward, but rather the importance of remaining attuned to connections. Similarly, the photographs, sculptures and wall drawings presented in the exhibition explore multiple ancient belief systems, connectivity and relationships between the part and the whole. In addition to Tao Te Ching, the Roman-era doctrine of Tetrapharmakos, a set of recommended remedies to avoid anxiety and heal the soul, is alluded to in You and I are earth (2016), The Long Yawn (2016) and The unattainable original connection (2016); installations that examine attempts to support or heal bodies, minds and objects. Approaches to healing and rejuvenation are further explored in Loboda’s two-sided photographic installation Early Dynastic Period I II III IV V etc,. (2016), which highlights perception, human hopes and transitions.

 

Support for Faux Guide includes Presenting Donor: Koerner Foundation; Support Donor: Shabin & Nadir Mohamed; Donor: Marwan H. Osseiran; International Arts Partner: Consulate General of France in Toronto.

Support for Cross Fade includes Lead Donors: La Fondation Emmanuelle Gattuso, Jack Weinbaum Family Foundation; Support Donors: Jacques Bernier & Lynn Bilodeau, Susie & Vahan Kololian; International Arts Partner: Consulate General of France in Toronto; Supported by: Galerie Eva Presenhuber, galerie kamel mennour, Kaufmann Repetto.

Support for Some weep, some blow flutes includes Support Donors: Catherine G. Barbaro, Yvonne Fleck & Dorothy Engelman; International Arts Partner: Consulate General of the Republic of Poland in Toronto; Supported by: MAISTERRAVALBUENA.

Admission at The Power Plant is all year, all free, presented by BMO Bank of Montreal.

Director: Gaëtane Verna
Contact: Nadia Yau, Marketing & Communications Officer / media [​at​] thepowerplant.org / +1 416 973 4927

 

*Left: Yto Barrada, Untitled (painted educational boards found in Natural History Museum, abandoned construction site, Azilal, Morocco; fig. 3), 2013–15. © Yto Barrada 2016.; Courtesy Pace London; Sfeir-Semler Gallery, Hamburg, Beirut; and Galerie Polaris, Paris. Right: Yto Barrada, Untitled (painted educational boards found in Natural History Museum, abandoned construction site, Azilal, Morocco; fig. 5), 2013–15. Chromogenic print, 70 x 70 cm. © Yto Barrada 2016. Courtesy Pace London; Sfeir-Semler Gallery, Hamburg, Beirut; and Galerie Polaris, Paris.

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