Artist Laiwan writes: Begun in 1987 investigating the questions, What is an image? What is a photograph?, she who had scanned the flower of the world… is an ongoing project where I collect flowers from the city I am showing in, placing the petals into slide mounts. The flowers can be bought, given, picked to give expression to the species and lives of flowers found at that time and place. The slides are then projected, powered by a slide projector’s autoplay function over the course of the installation. Due to natural causes of duration and temperature affected by heat from the projector lamp and its fierce uncompromising light, the images that the petals project change, evolve, degrade, mold and fade over the course of the installation. The changes daily and hourly are subtle, delicate, yet visible to an attentive and dedicated viewer. This project’s seeming romanticism is countered by a subtle violence in the work.
This piece has had a variety of incarnations as a live slide projection with an accompanying performative reading of poetic text I wrote. It also exists as a limited edition of inkjet prints handbound into a book, and as backlit projection and prints shown on the wall in a gallery. The Morris and Helen Belkin Art Gallery at UBC purchased a set of prints for its permanent collection.
The title comes from a phrase in a poem by Sappho written in love for a soldier’s wife who had lost her husband to war: she who had scanned the flower of the world’s manhood…
Read the poem [To an army wife, in Sardis…] by Sappho (6th century BCE)
Over the course of Stations: Some Recent Acquisitions, we will consider works from the Belkin’s permanent collection through the lens of the pandemic world around us, in particular through the words of the artists themselves. Works from the Collection extends these works from the gallery space to the intimacy of the home; to see more of the Belkin’s collection, visit https://collection.belkin.ubc.ca.
Scott Watson looks at David Horvitz's 2017 For Kiyoko through the lens of the current crises.[more]
Teresa Sudeyko talks about Janet Cardiff and George Bures Miller’s 2001 House Burning.[more]
Rhoda Rosenfeld's work from the series Maps of the World (1977) is included in Stations: Some Recent Acquisitions.[more]
Stations draws on recent acquisitions to the permanent collection and is organized into interrelated modules that explore some of the Belkin’s research areas. While the physical gallery remains open to the public, COVID-19 has pushed us to rethink our exhibitions. With the increased turn to our website, we are including here a selection of films that are also being screened in the gallery space.[more]
Stations: Some Recent Acquisitions explores some of the Belkin’s research areas through a selection of new works in the permanent collection. Director and curator Scott Watson walks through the exhibition and offers insight into some of the key works and themes.[more]
Due to the uncertainty caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, we are postponing the Image Bank exhibition until June 2021. Our January exhibition will draw on recent acquisitions to the permanent collection. Titled Stations: Some Recent Acquisitions, the exhibition will be in four or five interrelated modules that explore some of the gallery’s research areas.[more]
The following is a list of resources related to the artists in Stations: Some Recent Acquisitions. This list is not exhaustive or an official recommendation, but rather comprised of suggested readings compiled by Public Programs, graduate and undergraduate student researchers at the Belkin. These readings are intended to provide additional context for the exhibition and act as springboards for further research or questions stemming from the exhibition, artists and works involved. Resources are arranged by artist, listed alphabetically by last name. This compilation is an evolving and growing list, so check back in the future for more additions.[more]