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Celebrated artists Helen Cammock & Wolf Tones: Winter Exhibitions setting up at Oakville Galleries this month

Rhonda K on Unsplash
Rhonda K on Unsplash

Oakville Galleries, a local not-for-profit contemporary art museum, announced winter 2023 exhibitions, including British artist Helen Cammock and the US-based collaborative group Wolf Tones. The exhibitions open Saturday, Jan. 28, with an array of public programs presented at both gallery sites throughout the exhibitions, including a performance by cellist Charles Curtis, presented in conjunction with Wolf Tones: A Many-Sided House

Helen Cammock's exhibition: They Call It Idlewild will run from Jan. 28 to May 13 at the Centennial Square gallery. This is the first exhibition in Canada of internationally renowned British artist Helen Cammock. Cammock is a recipient of the Max Mara Art Prize for Women and a joint recipient of The Turner Prize. Her multi-disciplinary practice spans film, music, print, text, and performance.

Helen Cammock artist
Helen Cammock artist

Bringing together highly personal, poetic reflections with a raft of literary citations, her work explores subjects such as:

  • Blackness
  • Power
  • Wealth
  • Vulnerability
  • Resilience
  • Social Responsibility.

For this exhibition, the artist will show works reflecting on the notion of idleness, straddling both its potential as a profoundly generative space of creativity and sustenance and the political misuses, structural power play, and racial stereotyping that continues to surround it. 

The exhibition further involves a film and layering photographs and footage. Alongside the film, the exhibition will include watercolour paintings, silkscreen prints, and a large-scale banner that uses the visual language of workers’ protest movements.

Wolf Tones' exhibition: A Many-Sided House will be displayed at Oakville Galleries space in Gairloch Gardens from Jan. 28 to May 13. 

This is also the first exhibition in Canada by the artist group Wolf Tones comprised of Nancy Shaver, Max Goldfarb, Sterrett Smith, Pradeep Dalal, and David Levi Strauss. These five artists gather, borrow, and exchange their works throughout the four adjacent rooms.

Working separately and together, they respond to this unique context with overlapping meditations on varied themes, including:

  • The handmade
  • The anonymous
  • Connection and exchange
  • Difference and recurrence
  • Material histories
  • The lake
  • Flotsam
  • The movement and circulation of images, objects, and materials.
Wolf Tones - Photo courtesy of Oakville Galleries
Wolf Tones - Photo courtesy of Oakville Galleries

Born in Appleton, in the US, Shaver draws from her history as an explorer returning to observe a place of origin. Goldfarb’s constellation of sculptures from shipping models and navigational tools, and more geared to draw attention to lake views transfixing the audience to broader patterns of circulation. Sterrett Smith’s works embrace the provisional and the propositional, using various materials from fabrics, ceramics, paint and Aqua resin,  wood and more. Dalal’s installation mines the idea of textiles as territories using photography and photographs nudging one's visual and sensual modes of perception.

Also included in this exhibition is the Mobile Library Unit for Many Sided House, a research-based contribution by writer David Levi Strauss that engages the poetics and politics of attentive looking. 

Collaborating with A Many-Sided House, cellist Charles Curtis will perform in The Studio at Gairloch Gardens on the evening of Mar. 15. Curtis will perform a series of compositions that engage the cello as a site of uncertainty, a physical and acoustical object to be explored in performance.

The powerhouse of artistic talent mentioned above will be an exciting exhibition for Oakvillians and more to attend!