Lyla Rye is a Toronto based artist who began her studies in architecture. She works in installation, sculpture, video and photography to explore our experience of architectural space. Rye studied at the University of Waterloo, York University and the San Francisco Art Institute. For over 30 years her work has been exhibited in galleries and screenings across Canada and internationally including New York, San Francisco, Adelaide, Auckland, Buffalo, Paris, and Berlin. She has exhibited at The Power Plant, The Whitney Museum of American Art, Southern Alberta Art Gallery, The Textile Museum of Canada and as part of the Karachi Biennale in Pakistan. Her recent solo exhibition, Mirage, was presented at Prefix ICA in 2020 in Toronto. She has work in the public collections of the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia, York University, Cadillac Fairview Corporation, The Tom Thomson Art Gallery, The Robert McLaughlin Gallery and as part of Ways of Something, at The Whitney Museum of American Art, NY. She has received numerous grants from the Canada Council for the Arts, the Ontario Arts Council and the Toronto Arts Council. www.lylarye.com; www.premise52.com; www.mentorlylarye.com
Spring Hurlbut’s installations, sculpture, video and photography possess an aesthetic continuity that resonates in the tension between clear, minimal means, and complex subject matter. Emerging in the early 1980s among a generation of artists who challenged the limitations of the museum, Hurlbut was recognized at home and abroad for temporary architectural installations that established the themes of presence and absence elaborated in her mature oeuvre. By the mid 1990s her interest in the realms of life and death led to ambitious projects inspired by collections. Working with objects and specimens in the possession of museums of natural history in Canada and abroad, she cut unconventional paths through familiar orthodoxies of display, eschewing chronology and fixed hierarchies, transforming collection displays based on the idea of preserving an illusion of life to recast the museum as a cultural mausoleum. These interventions remain significant to international discourse about the role of the museum today. In…recent work, Hurlbut unsentimentally envisions our inevitable destiny in death while acknowledging the resurgent continuum of life. Solemn and starkly refined, her photographs of cremated remains are also richly detailed and arrestingly beautiful. They capture something more elusive than the familiar role photography plays in remembrance and commemoration… – Jessica Bradley, Independent Curator and Consultant.
Laura Barrón is a photo- and video-based artist and arts educator. She holds an MFA in visual arts from York University and a BFA in visual arts from the National School of Plastic Arts (ENAP-UNAM) in Mexico. Her work has been exhibited and published internationally since 1996. She has taught photography in several institutions, including the University of Morelos (UAEM) in Mexico and York and OCAD Universities in Toronto. Laura’s work belongs to several public and private collections and has been awarded and extensively supported by FONCACONACULTA Mexico, the Ontario Arts Council, the Toronto Arts Council and the Canada Council for the Arts. Laura’s work explores the meanings of landscape. Through the examination of territory, geography and cartography she seeks to create relationships between memory, place and presence. Laura emigrated from Mexico to Canada in 2003.
Deborah Carruthers is a Montréal inter-arts artist exploring the anthropocentric environment, absence, and solastalgia. Seeing sound and exploring its visual notation through painting, photography, printmaking, and drawing is one of her preoccupations. This informs creation of her graphic scores, such as slippages, premiered by the UBC Symphony Orchestra during her artist residency at the Peter Wall Institute for Advanced Studies-UBC (2018). Her most recent composition, safe passage (2021), may be heard as part of her installation here at the MacKenzie Art Gallery. Her work has been supported by Canada Council for the Arts, the Conseil des arts et des lettres du Québec, and private foundations, and is in private/public collections in Canada (notably as the only non-musician collected by the Canadian Woman Composers Archive), USA, and Europe.
Until the early 70’s, i spent my childhood in Ireland. My first observatory was a stone circle in a farmer’s field. Clouds with shirt tails half hanging out dressed the horizon line. The ocean, less than an hour’s drive away, returned home unquestioned. As did i. In the city, i could find the four winds bus. Outside, ghosts of forests long cut down waited for safe passaging. But always the troubles–a low boom in the background–indecipherable to me; deafening for my parents. Saskatchewan needed doctors. And my father was a doctor. So. i heard the ocean in prairie grasses. Watched sky lie on the ground; teaching breathing. i now live in a city close to a river where salt and saline meet. Salt of the same ocean i left behind.
Presences: To leave a place or lose a loved one. An undoing and doing.
My work is small, simple, and travels by word of mouth. And with each word, the sound and silence is different. Never the same.
Gabriela García-Luna is a visual artist born in Mexico and living in Canada since 2009. Her photo-based and installation work investigates the paradoxical aspects of photography – of showing the seen and revealing the unseen.
In her practice García-Luna works with multiple mediums including print, drawing, video, and sculpture to construct images and environments exploring the limits of representation and abstraction, aiming to reflect alternative realities and ways of seeing.
Garcia-Luna’s work has been exhibited since 2000 in Mexico, Canada, India and Europe. Her work has received awards from FONCA- CONACULTA Mexico, the Saskatchewan Arts Board and the Canada Council for the Arts and is part of public and private collections including Global Affairs Canada.
She holds an MFA in Studio Arts from the University of Saskatchewan and a BDes from the Autonomous Metropolitan University (UAM) in Mexico City. Her work is represented by Slate Fine Art Gallery in Regina, Saskatchewan.
Erika DeFreitas’s multidisciplinary practice includes performance, photography, video, installation, textiles, drawing and writing. Placing emphasis on gesture, process, the body, documentation and paranormal phenomena, DeFreitas mines concepts of loss, post-memory, legacy and objecthood. Her work has been exhibited nationally and internationally including: Kitchener-Waterloo Art Gallery; Platform Centre for Photographic and Digital Arts, Winnipeg; Gallery TPW, Toronto; Project Row Houses and the Museum of African American Culture, Houston; Fort Worth Contemporary Arts; and Ulrich Museum of Art, Wichita. She is a recipient of the 2016 Toronto Friends of the Visual Arts Finalist Artist Prize, the 2016 John Hartman Award, and was longlisted for the 2017 Sobey Art Award. DeFreitas holds a Master of Visual Studies from the University of Toronto.