Many new beginnings come with spring; things slowly begin to come back to life and we can finally ditch our $300 winter jackets. For some, spring means reaching the end and taking on new projects. In that line, UTM’s graduating art students will commemorate their final days of university with a two-part exhibition, Horizon Line.
The pieces range from canvas to print, digital media, and audio/visual art. Artwork that’s more dynamic and expressive can be found in CCT. The aim of this exhibition is to strengthen and develop the skills that emerging artists will take with them into the world.
It has been a while since I stepped into an art gallery, so visiting our school’s was special for me. I walked into the bright gallery and immediately fell in love with what I saw; the art was much more than what I expected. Mainly, it was that there was simplicity that I enjoyed. I love art that’s open to interpretation, so I stood in front of each piece and observed it, trying to find a personal meaning. Each piece had a story to tell.
As I walked around the room I noticed three photographs of a girl struggling to put her blue shirt on the wrong way—she was trying to force her head through the arm hole. This has happened to most of us at some point, but there is a deeper undertone to the comedy. I put on the headphones and listened to the description of the things going wrong in current events.
“It’s a constructed identity of this girl who is struggling with societal norms and how she is trying to fit in,” says Jordyn Stewart, a fifth-year art and art history student and installation coordinator for Group 1. Her piece is titled “It’s 3:30 in the afternoon”.
“This piece is an analogy and symbolizes an individual’s feelings toward the need to conform to society and what it deems right or wrong,” she commented. “The installation originally contained the photographs alone, but the idea quickly emerged into something greater—the addition of the audio component helping to convey the message.”
As I looked on, I noticed a screen on my right that seemed very obscure. A man standing next to a toilet on the screen piqued my interest. The creator of the piece was fourth-year art and art history student John Elammar, also a volunteer installation coordinator for Group 1. Elammar’s digital video is titled “The Toilet Project”.
He stands next to a toilet on a dolly at different locations. It’s unique and audiences respond with understandably puzzled reactions. “I was interested in photographing public toilets, so I came up with this idea where I take a toilet around with me wherever I go,” Elammar laughs. “It definitely separates itself from the rest where viewers sit and muddle over what it could mean.”
The exhibition runs March 18 to 29 and April 1 to 12. The Opening Reception is on April 1 from 5 to 7 p.m.