Rick Leong: El Camino 
Sandra Erbacher, Elizabeth McIntosh, Janet Werner: Jupe bleue, une blonde, des calculatrices et un nu couché

Rick Leong: El Camino 
Sandra Erbacher, Elizabeth McIntosh, Janet Werner: Jupe bleue, une blonde, des calculatrices et un nu couché

Parisian Laundry

Rick Leong, Pacoche  (detail), 2016. Oil on canvas, 96 x 72 inches.
May 11, 2016

Rick Leong: El Camino 
Sandra Erbacher, Elizabeth McIntosh, Janet Werner: Jupe bleue, une blonde, des calculatrices et un nu couché

May 13–June 11, 2016

Opening: Thursday, May 12, 6–9pm

Parisian Laundry
3550 St-Antoine West 
Montreal, Quebec
Canada H4C 1A9


El Camino
Parisian Laundry is thrilled to present El Camino, an exhibition of paintings by Victoria-based artist Rick Leong. Produced following the artist’s recent trip to Ecuador, Leong took in the local flora and fauna of the coastal environment responding to them through this series of paintings. Each painting illustrates the extraordinary moments experienced on this journey, becoming more fantastical through the subjectivity of memory. El Camino can be interpreted as a road trip, journey, path or way, and Leong’s work invites us to come along for the ride.

Leong’s practice encompasses hybrid landscapes drawn from direct experience, memory, and imagination, and is also informed by eastern and western painting traditions. The encounter is an idiosyncratic one, often producing peculiar scenes that delve into magical realism. Furthermore, in Leong’s paintings the landscape can be understood less as a definitive backdrop than a fluctuating environment in relation to subjects that are imbued with their own histories and narratives that inflect one’s experience of them. In El Camino, this is most literally articulated in Guayaquil. The painting was inspired by Leong’s visit to a park in the city known for its wild iguanas. A bronze sculpture of two wild boars fiercely fighting stands in the corner of the park, a gift from the city’s Chinese community in 1885. Encountering this statue and learning of its history embodies the manner in which specific identities, intersections and differences echo throughout the landscape in unexpected ways.

Leong obtained his MFA from Concordia University (Montreal, 2007). In 2008, he was a finalist in the Royal Bank of Canada’s Painting Competition). In addition to having participated in many group exhibitions at various Canadian and international spaces, Leong has also been the subject of solo shows at Two Rivers Gallery (Prince George), Anna Leonowens Gallery (Halifax), the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria, and the McClure Gallery (Montreal). He has been the recipient of numerous grants from the Canada Council for the Arts. Leong’s work is collected widely across Canada, including the collections of the ALDO Group, the Canada Council Art Bank, the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria and the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts.

Jupe bleue, une blonde, des calculatrices et un nu couché 
Jupe bleue, une blonde, des calculatrices et un nu couché brings together the work of Sandra Erbacher, Elizabeth McIntosh and Janet Werner for an exhibition organized along the junctions of gender and objects. Certain critical traditions and feminisms have disparaged the object, particularly in the form of the commodity and the fetish. Rather than an outright dismissal, the artists featured in Jupe bleue, une blonde, des calculatrices et un nu couché critically engage with the object’s contradictory, imperfect and oftentimes difficult relationship to conventions of femininity; its compulsion towards desire, pleasure and order.

Sandra Erbacher’s practice plays with the culture of corporate bureaucracy. Using objects and materials typical of its spaces, she examines and disrupts the ways in which they produce and reinforce hierarchies along lines of gender, race and class. Elizabeth McIntosh approaches abstraction counter to its modernist roots. Instead of treating abstract paintings as art objects absolved of content, McIntosh situates them as historically, socially and culturally subject, fundamentally investigating the structure of this arrangement. Janet Werner paints fictional portraits, assembled through a variety of sources including fashion, popular culture and art history. The subjects she pictures acknowledge the fissures, beauty and brutality of identity in a culture of obsessive consumption.

Common to all of the artworks is an optic of the ordinary. Jupe bleue, une blonde, des calculatrices et un nu couché confronts the ways in which femininities are reiterated through interactions and internalizations of mundane objects, whether in the form of office supplies, the clichés of modernism or the images of mass media. Moreover the artworks shown actively question the historically imposed links between the feminine and the banal, posing both as rich sites of complexity. Sandra Erbacher’s work appears courtesy of GRIN (Providence, RI). Elizabeth McIntosh’s work appears courtesy of Diaz Contemporary (Toronto, ON).

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Parisian Laundry
May 11, 2016

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