Saturday, July 11, 2015

JJ Lee and Robyn Thomas show staring on July 18th.

loop Gallery is pleased to present Chinoiserie, a new exhibition by guest artist, JJ Lee and Paper Works by Robyn Thomas.

July 18 - August 9, 2015         
Reception: Saturday, July 18, 2-5PM

chi·noi·se·rie ˌ noun (shēnˈwäzərē)a decorative style of Western art based on imitations of Chinese motifs especially popular in 18th century Europe

This body of work is based on blue and white china patterns such as “Blue Willow” that depict an imagined Chinese scene. The increased importation of authentic blue and white porcelain from China in the 1700’s into Europe spawned a fervour for anything “oriental” and a longing for anything “exotic”.  As a result, fantastical versions of the original pottery were created by Europeans of an imagined China. With round canvasses alluding to plates, Lee explores the “chop suey” culture that is created when East meets West through migration.

JJ Lee’s (BFA, NSCAD ‘92, MFA, York University ‘99) mixed media paintings explore the intersection of Chinese and Canadian cultures by appropriating images from a variety of sources.  She has exhibited extensively across Canada and has been featured in The Globe and Mail. Lee is the recipient of several awards (e.g. Canada Council, Ontario Arts Council, RBC /Canadian Art Foundation’s New Canadian Painting Competition, Asian Canadian Artists Fund for Visual Arts).  She is included in the Magenta Foundation’s “Carte Blanche: Painting, a survey of contemporary Canadian painters”. Lee is an Assistant Professor and Director, First Year at OCAD University.


In Thomas’s new exhibition, the ancient process of weaving is used to inspire reflection on the present value of paper as a means of record keeping. Printed pages are used as fibre, ceasing to function as a means of recording and informing. Woven together and divorced from their original contexts, the pages begin to tell another story. Thomas’s woven sculptures allow us to pick out snippets of information from each page, while simultaneously approaching the reworked papers as objects of aesthetic contemplation.

Robyn Thomas is a Toronto-based artist. She studied at George Brown College, the Ontario College of Art and Design and received her Fine Arts degree from the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design, experimenting in both sculpture and fibre. Her work has been shown in galleries across North America and can be found in university collections as well as numerous private collections across the globe. Thomas’s work has also been presented by design companies including WilliamsCraig inc., Studio Pyramid, and KLAUS by Nienkamper.