Angela Grossmann: Troublemakers
Curator: Lynn Ruscheinsky, PhD
McMaster Museum of Art, Levy and Tomlinson Galleries (Level 4)
January 17 – March 9, 2019
Thursday, January 17, 6 – 8 pm
Angela Grossmann in conversation with Dr. Lynn Ruscheinsky “Hello Dolly” :
Friday, January 18th, 12:30-1:20 pm
Events are free and open to the public.
The 68 works presented in Angela Grossmann’s Troublemakers address the role that performance plays in the transgression of gender and social expectation, the stigma of the unruly body and the disciplinary power of shame.
Throughout her career Grossmann has sought to re-create and re-dress the marginalized, the misunderstood and dispossessed with her strongly “feminist” dynamic mixed media works that intervene in both the physical form and visual experience of subjectivity. Troublemakers continues with this project exploring concepts relating to the “wanting to be” and “not wanting to be” of identity.
The re-make is at the heart of her undertaking. From her large found photo archives, which include vintage mug-shots (retrieved from the trash at the closure of the BC Penitentiary), risqué images of women posing in cheap motel rooms, sentimental portraits of children, tweens and toughs, her interventions strategically alter their meaning or potential meaning by dislocating them from their “normal” or expected context. Through the snip of her scissors, the deconstruction and reconstruction of body parts, the addition of doll’s clothes, feathers and felt hats, Grossmann blurs the borders between the unconscious and the purposeful and the finished and the unfinished. Certainly the most prominent, most creative and unspoken attraction in Grossmann’s work is her exceptional ability to create believable characters triumphant in their troublemaking. Her passionate provocations imply the possibility of other subject positions and with them the possibilities that the edicts of power are capable of being resisted, rewritten, and even reversed.
The show includes new and past works from Grossmann’s exhibitions: Mistress Works (2017), Models of Resistance (2015), Alpha Girls (2006), The Basement Show (2003), Corrections (2000), and Smaller than Life (1987-ongoing).
About the Artist
Angela Grossmann is a Vancouver-based visual artist. Over the last two decades her paintings and collages have been the subject of more than 20 solo shows in Canada, the U.S. Europe and Japan beginning with the Young Romantics Exhibition at the Vancouver Art Gallery (1985). The Art Newspaper (June 2006) included Grossmann on a list of 100 artists who have most influenced students at art schools in Britain (culled from 11 leading British art schools). Recently her work has been featured in three Vancouver Art Gallery exhibitions including Unreal that showcased her miniature surrealist paintings. A series of her collages were featured in a solo booth at ArtToronto 2015.
Grossmann’s work has been the subject of numerous scholarly articles including: Princeton Press: The End of Innocence: Picturing Her (Dr. Loren Lerner), Le Mois de la Photo: Memoires and Testimonies (Dr. Martha Langford), Hobo Magazine: Alpha Girls (Sean Starke): Flesh for a Fantasy ( Danielle Egan), Canadian Art Magazine: Portrait a Toughs (Deborah Campbell), Canadian Art, Whitehot Magazine, the Vancouver Sun, the Georgia Straight and Border Crossings reviewed Grossmann’s Models of Resistance.
Alongside her solo career Grossmann continues collaborations with the Futura Bold collective, its members including: Attila Richard Lukacs, Graham Gillmore and Douglas Coupland – to date the group have launched six major self-initiated projects.
An illustrated exhibition brochure with essay by Dr. Lynn Ruscheinsky is available at the Museum.
Image: Angela Grossmann, New Doll, 2017, 21 x 15 inches
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McMaster Museum of Art
Alvin A. Lee Building
1280 Main St W
Hamilton, ON L8S 4L6