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Ian August: RE: BUILD THEM

November 7 – December 7, 2013

Opening reception: Thursday, November 7, 4:00 - 6:00 p.m.

Artist talk: Wednesday, November 13 at 12:30 p.m. in Room 2M70 (2nd floor, Manitoba Hall)

Bauhaus film screening & discussion with the artist & Dr. Oliver Botar: Monday, November 18 at 4:00 p.m. in Eckhardt-Gramatté Hall (3rd floor, Centennial Hall)

RE: BUILD THEM is a solo exhibition of new paintings, sculptural maquettes and video by Winnipeg artist Ian August that reflect upon the effects of the Bauhaus movement through a (re)imagining of its (would be) spaces and structures.

Active in the local visual arts scene for more than a decade August first gained recognition as part of the Two-Six collective, a group known for their covert public art bombings across the city. More recently he completed a Master of Fine Arts degree at York University. Upon graduation August spent several months in Berlin researching the Bauhaus School in particular and travelling across Germany and in Italy to consider other art historically significant source material. August’s interest in the rise (and fall) of the Bauhaus School, its instructors and its students has influenced the direction of his new and recent work.

Process is a key component of creation and exhibition for August. He painstakingly constructs tableaus or scale models of modernist buildings, facades and interiors using wood, paper, everyday items and scraps. These architectural maquettes are documented through photography or video which become source material for oil paintings on canvas. Although the paintings are meant to be the principal output the maquettes and videos are presented as well, offering alternatives to consider the translation and construction of an image. In this way, viewers will appreciate the distortion and emphasis of certain aspects of the original source material as it is transformed across various media and scales.

Conceptually, August is interested in how modernist theory and its real life manifestations as built structures arose at the Bauhaus School. August notes that many Bauhaus architecture and design students were taught by abstract painters and he is keen to align that fact with his own practice:  “An abstraction happens at every stage [of my process] and I am eager to take concrete [modernist] structures that were rooted in Abstract painting theory and translate them back into painting.” Importantly, through his recreation of spaces from the past, August exposes the imperfections or incongruities of his subjects, thereby subverting the modernist agenda as well as the impulse to idealization.

Gallery 1C03 wishes to acknowledge the financial support of the Manitoba Arts Council for this exhibition project.

Jennifer Gibson
Gallery 1C03
The University of Winnipeg
515 Portage Avenue
Winnipeg, MB  R3B 2E9
Ph: 204.786.9253
F: 204.774.4134
E: j.gibson@uwinnipeg.ca