From February 14 2020 to March 20 2020

It's worth repeating (so I did)

Tara Lynn MacDougall

Opening: Friday, February 14th, from 6 to 8 pm

It’s worth repeating (so I did) is a collection of disparate works that consider how power and voice intersect with gender and class. The work challenges notions of authority through a process of textual rewriting and repositioning. It combines feminist strategies of appropriation, quotation, humour, and privileging the personal with aesthetic conventions associated with conceptual art and readymades.

Trends in art are flagged through tongue in cheek observations poking fun at their ubiquity. Forms of status and hierarchy are called into question through allusion to art world tropes and canonical figures. Authoritative declarations made by prominent male artists are turned into statements of self doubt, idiosyncratic wonderings and critical social commentary as a way to deconstruct the myth and media of artistic genius. A sound installation contrasts the prioritization of text in the visual works with a dematerialized and reverberant occupation of female-identified voice(s). The overall plurality and deliberate subversion of precise claims of status are meant to compose an affective, dialogical atmosphere.

With this work, I undertake a critical evaluation of art world structures as a way to reconcile my personal experiences as a working class woman within institutions like the academy and the gallery. My approach prioritizes attributing value and meaning to things -- be they stories, people, or formal qualities of an artwork -- that are otherwise disregarded or neglected. The work here is firmly feminist and politically engaged with both the aesthetics and media defining dominant systems of knowledge and social order.

Tara Lynn MacDougall is an interdisciplinary artist based in Montreal. She received a BFA from NSCAD University in 2007 and an MFA from the University of Lethbridge in 2018. She has presented work in exhibitions throughout Canada and the United States, including the recent Still Unpacking These Thoughts at the Siskind Gallery at Fanshawe College, and Impossible Expectations at Hamilton Artist’s Inc. Her practice combines video, audio, sculpture, printmaking, performance, and painting. Her interest lies in a critical and humourous re-evaluation of the art historical canon, and reconsideration of distinctions between standard labour and artistic production.