Sunday, February 05, 2006

Sunday Inspiration: Jennifer Angus

Finally, another installment of Sunday Inspiration...which has been on hiatus the last couple of weeks while I recharged the stained glass spotlight for this moving sermon. A kaleidoscope of intricate pattern quickly turns into a surreal version of Darwin's, Origin of Species, in JENNIFER ANGUS's work. A TERRIBLE BEAUTY is her current travelling exhibit that is now showing at the Textile Museum in Toronto. When I first saw her work at Artcite, I was taken in by the delicate and complex wallpaper patterning that totally consumed the gallery walls. But as I entered into the space I found myself in some Victorian collection with literally thousands of exotic insects pinned to the walls awaiting scientific classification. The impact is truly amazing as you marvel like some early entomologist discovering unseen species from the New World. This work reminds me of Paul Bush's, When Darwin Sleeps, in which he uses stop-frame animation to brings insects to life. In Jennifer's work, with the insects displayed in various positions, one can image the complex patterns coming alive as you blink rapidly like in some thaumatropic seizure to create the illusion of movement. The antenae twitch and the tranluscent wings flutter as you are taken through the looking glass into a world of forgotten wonder and undiscovered lands.
One has to look beyond the conventionalities of their field to incorporate themes and ideas into their work. I see too many students today copying gags and stories of cartoons past instead of building upon them. It is hard when the industry wants cookie cutter artists that can mimic other peoples styles. But the seeds of creativity germinates in the ability to learn and sythesize ideas into your own distintive style. I know it sounds like alot of bullshit but fuckity fuck fuck you gotta stick your head outside sometime because art can't be made in a test tube. Although I am sure there is some corporation working on it!! Inspiration in one easy to swallow pill:)

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