January 23, 2017 - The Power Plant - Winter 2017 exhibition season
January 23, 2017

The Power Plant

Jonathas de Andrade, O peixe (The Fish) (still), 2016. 16mm transferred to 2K, 37 minutes. Courtesy the artist and Galeria Vermelho, São Paulo. A production by Desvia and Wexner Center for the Arts, with the support of Funcultura-Pernambuco.

Winter 2017 exhibition season
Jonathas de Andrade, Latifa Echakhch, Maria Hupfield, Kapwani Kiwanga
January 28–May 14, 2017

Opening party: January 27, 8–11pm

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

T +1 416 973 4949
F +1 416 973 4933

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The Power Plant launches its 30th anniversary year in 2017 with its winter season, on view from January 28 to May 14, 2017. The season presents three major solo exhibitions by artists Jonathas de Andrade, Maria Hupfield and Kapwani Kiwanga; with Latifa Echakhch's Fleck Clerestory Commission Project still on view.

Jonathas de Andrade: On Fishes, Horses and Man
Curator: Carolin Köchling, Curator of Exhibitions, The Power Plant

Jonathas de Andrade’s works elucidate that realities are socially constructed. Depending on the power relations in place, some realities dominate and define the narrative, while others are marginalized. Interweaving fact and fiction, de Andrade’s works make visible peripheral realities within societies as they unfold upon the stages he constructs for them. 

In the film O peixe (The Fish), the first work encountered in the exhibition, fishermen embrace their catch in ten vignettes until the fish take their last breath. Shot on 16mm film, recalling an ethnographic lens, the work hovers between myth and document. Through the assertion of a fiction in O Levante (The Uprising) in the form of a film shoot, de Andrade gives visibility to those inhabiting Recife’s socially and economically deprived outskirts within the privileged, insulated city centre. In his project Cartazes para o Museu do Homem do Nordeste (Posters for the Museum of the Man of the Northeast), the artist proposes a new model for the eponymous museum in Recife, therefore revisiting the construction of national identity in north-eastern Brazil. Jonathas de Andrade’s solo exhibition at The Power Plant is the artist’s first comprehensive institutional solo show outside Brazil. 

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

Developed for the second edition of the Fleck Clerestory Commission Program in a space characterized by its openness in all directions—to the sky, the waterfront and the surrounding galleries—Latifa Echakhch’s work Cross Fade confronts viewers with a sky that is literally falling. Fragments of Echakhch’s sky still exist intact on the walls, though large parts of the sky 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. However, Echakhch shatters this illusion, rooting viewers in the present which, like a cross fade, is caught between the past and the future. 

Rendered in cement on the walls, the sky 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. Having exhibited extensively in museums and exhibitions worldwide, Cross Fade is the first presentation of Echakhch’s work in Canada.

Maria Hupfield: The One Who Keeps On Giving
Curator: Carolin Köchling, Curator of Exhibitions, The Power Plant

Objects contain meanings beyond their materiality. Through her performance practice, Maria Hupfield reveals the meanings we bring to or receive from these objects and the relationships, reactions and memories embedded in them. 

The title of the exhibition, The One Who Keeps On Giving, is an English translation of the Anishinaabe name of Hupfield’s mother as well as the title of Hupfield’s new commission. Centred on a seascape painting given to the artist by her late mother, the filmed performance features contributions from her siblings in combination with the painting to illuminate the collective memories evoked by the work. Alongside this new commission, the show also features a selection of objects that have appeared in Hupfield’s recent performances displayed alongside films in an installation of wooden structures: a canoe, a snowsuit, mitts and boots, a cassette recorder with headphones, a light bulb and seven items solicited from individuals. All of these objects are replicated in felt, a material which equalizes the objects beyond their specific functions. Through her performances, the artist underlines the relationships we hold with these objects, their environment and the cultural contexts that surround them.

The exhibition is a production of The Power Plant Contemporary Art Gallery, Toronto in partnership with Galerie de l’UQAM, Montréal; Mount Saint Vincent University Art Gallery, Halifax; and Canadian Cultural Centre, Paris.

Kapwani Kiwanga: A wall is just a wall
Curator: Carolin Köchling, Curator of Exhibitions, The Power Plant

As we go about our daily lives, we enter into and are confronted by spaces designed to shape and regulate our behaviour, whether we notice it or not. Though the intention of these architectural devices may be to reform or to protect, the actual outcomes can be ambiguous or potentially harmful. 

Kapwani Kiwanga exposes these underlying structures in her exhibition at The Power Plant by exposing their material mechanisms. These forms—for example, pink walls that are meant to calm aggressive prison inmates or blue lights that aim to deter intravenous drug-users by reducing the visibility of veins—are rarely looked to as culprits of the psychological or physiological effects they covertly produce. It is only when we are confronted with the raw materials that produce these intangible, yet powerful, relational dynamics—as arranged in the gallery context by the artist—that we are prompted to consider their social implications. The artist further delves into disciplinary architecture in her new film A Primer, in which she deconstructs the physical and psychological qualities of different built environments including schools, prisons, hospitals and mental health facilities. Kiwanga’s works remind us that as with all designs, ways to circumnavigate them quickly surface, and so the ageless tussle over space—who can access it and who cannot—re-emerges.  

A Primer is co-produced by The Power Plant, Toronto and the Logan Center Exhibitions, University of Chicago.


The winter 2017 exhibition season is supported by Presenting Sponsor TD Bank Group.

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, Swiss Arts Council, ProHelvetia; Supported by: Galerie Eva Presenhuber, galerie kamel mennour, Kaufmann Repetto.

Support for The One Who Keeps On Giving includes Major Donors: Julia & Robert Foster; Support Donors: Nancy Jain, Robin Thomson Anthony & Mary Dawn Thomson; Donors: Steven M. Wilson & Michael Simmonds; Supported by: Galerie Hugues Charbonneau.

Support for A wall is just a wall includes Support Donor: In memory of Muriel J. Prokopow; Donors: Nadine Leonard, Dr. Kenneth Montague & Ms. Sarah Aranha.


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

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

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