A Dream and a Drive: Circles, Dots, Os and Zerosis
a two-person exhibition of the work of Amber Frid-Jimenez and Kathy Slade.
The artists present new works including video and embroidery that draw on sources ranging from Gustave Flaubert’s novel Madame Bovary(1856) to Ekstase, a 1933 film starring Hedy Lamarr and directed by Gustav Machatý. Both historical works were deemed obscene by the censors of their time. Emma Bovary’s scandalous conduct, her desire, adulterous liaisons, and suicide, led Flaubert to trial where he was charged with offenses against public and religious morals; while Lamarr’s performance of Eva Hermann’s sexual desire—notoriously, the first portrayal of a female orgasm in the history of film—led to charges of indecency from various countries in Europe and North America that amounted to years of delay for the release of Ekstase.
The exhibition focuses on the circle or typographic figure O. The O manifests in a new series of embroidered monochromes by Slade. It is present in Hedy Lamarr’s embodiment of ecstasy in Frid-Jimenez’s remake of an excerpt of Ekstaseand exists within a fictitious journey around the streets of Rouen as imagined by Flaubert.
This exhibition marks the beginning of a new collaborative project for Frid-Jimenez and Slade that will study how images are read through persuasive texts and technologies and how meaning is formed through modes of reimagining, repetition, and reenactment.
Amber Frid-Jimenez is an artist whose work explores the role of design and technology in contemporary society. Her work investigates the aesthetics and cultural mechanics of the network through experimental platforms and visual installations. Frid-Jimenez has presented her work at institutions such as the Smithsonian, Casco Office for Art Design and Theory (NL), Maison Europeenne de la Photographie (Paris, FR), A Foundation (Liverpool, UK), Contemporary Art Gallery (Vancouver), Banff New Media Institute (Alberta), and Media Lab Prado (Madrid, SP). Frid-Jimenez holds a Science Masters in Media Arts and Sciences from the M.I.T. Media Laboratory. She earned her bachelor’s degree in fine art and philosophy from Wesleyan University. Frid-Jimenez is Canada Research Chair in art and design technology, and an associate professor at Emily Carr University of Art and Design.
Kathy Slade works across disciplines in a variety of media including textiles, sculpture, sound, performance, film, video, print, and publication. Through her practice, she points to moments and events in literature, art history, and popular culture from which to reimagine particular temporalities and texts, to create looping structures, and to produce remakes that play on repetition and the doublet of original and copy. Slade’s work will be presented this summer in group exhibitions at studio e gallery (Seattle, USA) and at Fluc (Vienna, AT). She has recently shown her work in solo presentations at Surrey Art Gallery, Walter C. Koerner Library at UBC, and 4COSE (London, UK). Together with Kay Higgins, Slade runs Publication Studio Vancouver. She founded READ Books at Libby Leshgold Gallery and is the founding editor of the Emily Carr University Press. Slade is the curator of the 2019 Vancouver Art Book Fair.