2010, Encaustic and oil on birch panel, 36"w x 18"h x 1.5"d
Eager campers have newly arrived at Camp Homunc-Homunc. Self-improvement, badges of merit, and bonding experiences were on the agenda of the “Connies”, but alas, it seems the intrepid troopers have inexplicably vanished. The mystery of their disappearance is reconstructed from recently located archival materials which include relics pointing to their actual identities.
The summer camp is a tantalizing and nostalgic location of cultural inclusion, reflecting memories of experience and desire. The meta-narratives I depict are loosely based on a childhood growing up in Ottawa and are influenced by stories and symbols of organized societies. The Connies are agents of order who invent rituals hovering between the fantastic and the plausibly banal as they endeavor to define their surroundings. Roaming within this gothic, liminal landscape, the protagonists sequestered here raise questions about culture and hybridity.
Using the medium of encaustic, the alluring luminosity of the transparent glazes transforms into a visually complex and paradoxical surface – delicate, ambiguous and diverse. Unique patterns revealed through a process of excavation resonate with the illusory mode of memory. In this series, scribed wax allows the mimetic rendering of line work to reference the woodcuts and engraved lithography of 19th century Victorian artwork, pointing to our lingering colonial past. A palette ranging from saccharine to primordially dark reflects influences of fairy tales, romance novels, advertising media and Canadian lore. Suspended in a darkened version of the idyllic Canadian landscape, Camp Homunc-Homunc is a parallel universe created exclusively to make what is familiar unfamiliar. Welcome all.
A Daimler Company