Emily Jan & Timmy MacDonald

Harcourt House Artist Run Centre opens its 2017 exhibition season with two evocative presentations: “Emily Jan: After the Hunt” (Main Gallery) and “Timmy MacDonald: A Simple Perversion” (Front Gallery).

Please join us for the official opening of both exhibitions along with the artists’ talk and tour on Thursday, January 26, 2017 from 7 to 10 pm. Wine & cheese reception (cash bar) will follow the official part. Admission is free. Both exhibitions run until February 24, 2017.

For more information, please contact Jacek Malec, Harcourt’s Executive Director, tel. 780-426-4180; email: harcourted@shaw.ca or Angele Karosi, Gallery Services Coordinator, tel. 780-426-4180; email harcourtinfo@shaw.ca, Tuesday to Saturday from 10 am to 5 pm, or visit our website at www.harcourthouse.ab.ca

Harcourt House Gallery is open to the public Tuesday to Saturday from 10 am to 5 pm. The Gallery is closed Sundays, Mondays and statutory holidays.


Emily Jan: After The Hunt (Main Gallery)

Jan’s installation “After The Hunt” features a three-dimensional life-sized tableau based upon the visual language of 17th century Dutch still-life paintings. The installation is a cheeky nod to the painting of the 17th century Dutch painter Franz Snijders titled “Game Still Life with a Roe Deer” (circa 1630). it combines elements of post-hunt still life paintings with their contemporary genres of floral, banquet, little breakfast, and vanitas genres into one sprawling staging that provides commentary on the excess of modern society, both materially – through accretion of labour and matter – and, conceptually – by referencing the ’embarrassment of riches’ for which the Dutch Golden Age was known: riches acquired through the era’s expended trade routes and colonial conquests.

Emily Jan is a Montreal-based multi-media artist, scenographer and writer. Originally from Oakland, California, Jan has traveled to 35 countries and lived in four, including South Africa and Mexico. Her biophilic sculptures and installations combine everyday found objects with meticulously worked raw materials to evoke faraway and the fantastical. As a wanderer, naturalist, and collector of objects and experiences, she is guided in her work by the spirit of exploration, kinship, and curiosity. Jan holds an MFA from Concordia University (2014), a BA with Honours from Brown University (2000), and a BFA with High Distinction from the California College of Arts (2009). She has exhibited nationally and internationally, and has recently returned from an artist’s residence in Denali National Park in Alaska. Her work can be seen in upcoming exhibitions in Edmonton, Hamilton, and the Fiberart International Triennial in Pittsburgh, USA, to name just a few.

Timmy MacDonald: A Simple Perversion (Front Gallery)

As the primal creator, Nature could be considered the world’s most powerful and influential artist. And standing at the junction of art and nature are environmental artists, who are often balanced on an intermediary edge, searching and synthesizing creative, unimagined new ways to redefine our relationships with nature. Working with a wide range of materials – ranging from the raw, the found, to discarded – environmental art can be evocative, provocative or sublime, and oftentimes communicates an urgent message. The field is interdisciplinary in the fact that environmental artists embrace ideas from science and philosophy. The practice encompasses traditional media, new media, and critical social forms of production.

Timmy MacDonald – a Calmar-based, multi-media artist and a recent graduate from the Alberta College of Art + Design – explores, in his expressive installations, a compelling story of our interrelations with the natural environment: the ecological, geographic, political, biological and cultural. Through his traditional studio work and multi-media installations, MacDonald creates awareness, stimulates dialogue with the intention to change human’s attitude toward other species and the nature as a whole, and encourages the long-term respect for the natural systems we coexist with. Says MacDonald about his work/installation entitled “A Simple Perversion” in relation to human’s attitude toward nature: “…. Man’s need to control the nature and shape it to his/her will has only succeeded in making perversions of nature. It can be seen when a piece of wood milled, planed, and sanded is placed next to a stump withered, twisted, and rough. These two objects are the same material, but are drastically different; one natural, the other a simple perversion …”.

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