MFA Thesis Two

Thursday, May 3, 2018 12:00 am - Saturday, May 19, 2018 12:00 am EDT (GMT -04:00)

The University of Waterloo Art Gallery (UWAG) and the MFA program in Fine Arts present MFA Thesis Two, the second and final graduation exhibition of the work by MFA students. This exhibit features installations by MFA candidates Aaron MacLean and Tait Wilman. Opening reception on Thursday, May 3 from 5:00 to 8:00.PM.

two artists' images

Gallery One: Aaron MacLean | Provisional Zones

Provisional Zones is an immersive installation made mostly from found and discarded objects. My working method is quite fluid and performative, similar in approach to how Robert Rauschenberg constructed his Combine works in the 1960s. When placed together in an immersive environment, objects can mirror a heightened experience of a fractured and disjointed world, one that the viewer experiences as they negotiate the space. The indeterminate meanings between provisional forms that are propped, dragged, dropped, suspended or portable, speak to issues of dislocation, rupture and distress. This indeterminacy also points to the Liminal, a space where instability and transformation are represented by objects of passage, such as doors and gates, which have the capacity to be repositioned, alongside items that lean precariously or appear to be in a state of transition. These unexpected juxtapositions invite the viewer to engage with the work on an intuitive, empathetic level.

Aaron MacLean is currently pursuing an MFA at the University of Waterloo, received his BFA from the University of Regina, and studied Asian ink painting with Woo Gyeoung in Busan, South Korea. He was awarded a Shantz International Scholarship through the University of Waterloo, and worked with artist James Hyde in Brooklyn, New York in 2017.

Gallery Two: Tait Wilman | Search Party

Search Party is an installation and video exploration of identity—how it is constructed, consumed, and what role the landscape plays in the formation of Canadian identity.  Since moving to Ontario from Alberta, I feel lost without the Rockies. In attempting to confront my disorientation I developed an alter ego, the City Cowgirl, as a stand-in for my affection towards the West and a means to more objectively appraise this peculiar archetype. The development of a persona allows me to act out and comment on the troubled relationship I have with my own identity. Camouflaged as a rock, the City Cowgirl stumbles blindly along while attempting to navigate the landscape in search of home, a place of reassuring comfort and stability. Using memory as a touchstone, my work uses the guise of souvenirs and commercial display methodologies as strategies to reenact the familiar while exploring the commodification of Western Canada, the landscape, and the female body.

Tait Wilman is a Masters of Fine Art Candidate at the University of Waterloo and graduated with her BFA from the Alberta College of Art and Design. She was awarded a Shantz International Scholarship through the University of Waterloo, and worked with artist duo Jarsdell Solutions Ltd.: Rae-Yen Song and Michael Barr in Glasgow, Scotland in 2017, and was awarded a Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council grant in conjunction with her thesis research.

Please join us in celebrating the work of these outstanding MFA candidates. Exhibitions are free and open to the public. Gallery hours.